The owners of the West Manchester Mall have applications pending before West Manchester Township officials that, if approved, could help developers break ground this spring.
"We don't have all approvals and can't set a start date, but we're a lot closer," said Tony Ruggeri, co-founder of mall owners M&R Investors, based in Dallas.
A township inspector is reviewing a building permit application for demolition that could be approved by Wednesday, Feb. 5, said Monica Love, township zoning officer.
An approval would give M&R permission to demolish a portion of the mall between Macy's and Walmart.
Land-use plans to redevelop the mall will be considered Tuesday, Feb. 11, by the township planning commission and will go to the board of supervisors on Thursday, March 27, Love said.
Developers need township approval before they can seek approval from the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation for an access drive from Carlisle Road and the mall, she and Ruggeri said.
"Before an access drive can be talked about, we must have PennDOT approval. We're still doing traffic survey work and haven't submitted anything to PennDOT yet," he said.
M&R is also still working on lease agreements with existing tenants and future tenants.
"We have to make sure we are in compliance in lease agreements with our current tenants, and we still have to get some new leases signed," Ruggeri said.
Tenants: He would not disclose which tenants will be part of the new mall, other than the anchor stores remaining.
The mall is anchored by Kohl's, Macy's, Regal Cinemas and Walmart, and all four would remain open during construction.
Other tenants will stay on a month-to-month lease.
"We're working with a small group of tenants to keep them open through a good part of the construction. We're working to keep them open until a new space is completed somewhere at the mall," Ruggeri said.
Once all approvals are received, developers will be eager to move forward on the $47 million redevelopment of the 32-year-old shopping hub at 1800 Loucks Road, changing it from an enclosed mall to an outdoor plaza similar to Hunt Valley Towne Center in Maryland.
The York County commissioners, township and West York school board recently approved a tax incentive financing (TIF) plan that will allow the mall to be revamped while receiving a limited tax break on the improved property.
"There are still a lot of pieces to put together before we can set a firm starting date, but we're still hopeful some portions of the redevelopment will be completed and open for the Christmas season," Ruggeri said.
— Candy Woodall at email@example.com.