Big shopping center planned for Frankford

A re­gion­al shop­ping cen­ter with 21 large stores and many smal­ler shops will be built in the north­ern half of the old Frank­ford Ar­sen­al and should be up and run­ning by late sum­mer or fall 2015, de­veloper Mark Hankin last week told mem­bers of the Frank­ford Civic As­so­ci­ation.

Hankin has seen pro­pos­als come and go for the prop­erty he and oth­er part­ners in Ar­sen­al As­so­ci­ates have owned since 1983, but this plan is ready to be made a real­ity, he said on Nov. 7. Con­struc­tion will be­gin in 2014. 

The new cen­ter will provide about 1,000 jobs, with an­oth­er 450 jobs while un­der con­struc­tion. It will con­trib­ute $3 mil­lion in taxes to the city and $11 mil­lion to the state, Hankin said.

Ori­gin­ally, the idea was to build an in­dus­tri­al park, but that plan was scrubbed and sub­sti­tuted with one for a shop­ping mecca. For the last 12 years, Hankin said, his com­pany has been over­see­ing en­vir­on­ment­al cleanups and de­moli­tion of old Ar­sen­al build­ings.

He said In­ter­state 95 sep­ar­ates the prop­erty from sur­round­ing neigh­bor­hoods, and the cur­rent high­way up­grades will in­clude a ramp that will enter right in­to the mall. Road im­prove­ments and traffic lights will make en­ter­ing and leav­ing the mall at Bridge and Ta­cony streets.

Much of the prop­erty already is leased. There will be many stores, res­taur­ants and ample park­ing. He said he was not at liberty to name any of the stores. ••

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