What is the Future of OKC Metro Malls?

08.15.2018

The general thinking is that Class A malls are performing well and will continue to perform well. We see this at Penn Square Mall with sales over $700 per square foot, and the tenant mix remains strong; Simon has been able to replace tenants that have vacated, and the Container Store is an excellent addition. Nationally, Class B malls are seeing signs of stress and are having to embrace new tenants and new strategies, in some cases adding housing and alternative uses. Quail Springs Mall falls in this category as they have seen some increased vacancy, particularly in the east wing. They have torn down the former Macy’s building and added Lifetime Fitness in the parking lot (not connected to the mall).

Quail Springs won’t fail, but General Growth has its work cut out to reinvent the mall to keep it relevant. Sooner Mall in Norman is a bit of an anomaly as smaller malls have typically not fared well nationally. Some smaller tenants have closed, including Forever 21. However, the real question with Sooner Mall is what will happen with Sears and JC Penney. If they close in the next couple of years, it will put a lot of stress on the mall. The 200 or so Class C malls around the country are expected to fail; Oklahoma City has already experienced this with Crossroads and Heritage Park.

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