NORWALK, Conn. – Developers of The SoNo Collection deny that their mall is going to open later than planned.
Although a press release from Macy’s Inc. revealed an opening date of Fall 2019 and developers said in April that the mall would open in October 2018, General Growth Properties (GGP) Associate Developer Rob Jakubik said the opening date has always been “fluid.”
Jakubik said GGP will pull a construction permit from Norwalk soon, characterizing the prediction made by Norwalk Chief Building Official Bill Ireland of a mid-January permit as accurate.
Macy’s Inc., the parent company of Bloomingdale’s, issued two press releases on Jan. 4. One said sales had declined 2.1 percent in November and December from the previous year, in departments it owns solely, and 2.7 percent when you include third party vendors. The other press release outlined plans to close 68 stores and reorganize the field structures that supports the remaining stores.
As part of the second release, Macy’s Inc. mentioned that a store would open in The SoNo Collection in fall 2019.
GGP Senior Developer Doug Adams said in April that GGP was still on track to open The SoNo Collection in October, 2018.
As late as October, Redevelopment Agency Executive Director Tim Sheehan said that GGP was still planning to begin construction by the end of 2016.
“It hasn’t really been delayed. I think the timeline of the construction start was always pretty fluid, depending on permitting and approvals from the city. So, we are where we are,” Jakubik said Tuesday, after commenting that GGP had not announced a delay.
The 2019 date was a projection from Macy’s, he said, later adding, “that’s probably about right.”
“It’s subject to change but that’s kind of what’s out there right now,” Jakubik said. “When you are in the ground, you have a bad winter or something could delay it. Or if things going well, it could open (early). So, it’s really fluid.”
GGP has a contractor with an office in Norwalk, and they’re preparing to mobilize, he said.
“Our goal is to be in the ground as soon as possible,” Jakubik said.
The communication with the city “is there on our end” but “we also need clarification on a few things,” he said.
“We are moving forward with all of our processes but prior to get into the ground we have a few outstanding items left,” he said.
It’s been said that Norwalk will get about $5 million in construction permit fees from the mall but that’s not quite accurate, Jakubik said.
Some of that will come from the individual stores getting permits to build their interiors once the mall’s structure is completed, he said.