EAGAN, Minn. -- Outlet malls in Minnesota currently sit on the outskirts of the Twin Cities in Albertville, North Branch and Medford. That could change in two years.
City leaders approved preliminary plans from Paragon Outlet Partners to build an outlet mall, just five miles south of the Mall of America.
The mall will sit on the Cedar Avenue lot near Cedar Avenue and Highway 13. The land sat empty for more than a decade and was nothing but a brown field. But Mayor Mike Maguire and other city leaders no longer see the dirt instead they see the possibilities.
"They see a blank canvass waiting to be painted on," Maguire said of the plan.
The hope is to offer shoppers another place to go for high end products.
"Go up and have fun at the Mall of America but then come down and really got some value for your dollar on high quality products in a really enjoyable environment," he said.
The stores aren't being named yet. But other outlet malls Paragon opened this year attracted brands like Coach, Nike and DKNY.
In a statement a R. Kelvin Antill, development partner for Paragon, said the $100 million project will bring more than new shops. He wrote "Our more than 400,000 square foot project will house approximately 100 leading designer and brand-name stores and bring 1,500-2,000 permanent jobs to the region."
Mayor Maguire said he's hopeful once the mall is up and running others will follow.
"I think we have a really good opportunity here with this upscale outlet mall to attract some additional businesses including hotels and restaurants to make that district go," he said.
Construction is expected to start this spring and will be open for shoppers by November 2014.
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