A Lifestyle Center Actually Getting Built?

We were surprised to see this article in a Chicago-area newspaper about a lifestyle center coming along in the suburb Mt. Prospect. Casto Lifestyle Properties’ $190-million Randhurst Village is apparently on target for an opening in the spring of 2011.

It sounds like many of the anchor tenants are in place, like AMC Theatres, Sports Authority and a Hampton Suites hotel, but Casto is still looking for some smaller stores to sign.

We’ve heard that lifestyle centers are, and will be for quite some time, the hardest-hit asset type in the retail sector because of overbuilding in areas that couldn’t support them. But maybe it depends on the location? Mt. Prospect is certainly in a densely populated area in Chicago’s Northwest suburbs.

Do you think this property type can survive, or were these centers way too overbuilt?

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9 Responses to “A Lifestyle Center Actually Getting Built?”


  1. 1 David Wluka February 16, 2010 at 9:33 am

    “Overbuilt” is the operative word here. Why not another lifestyle? Retail, like politics, is local and an underserved market ought to succeed. Look at newly opened Legacy Place in Dedham Massachusetts. It’s a success by any standards.

  2. 2 Mark Winter February 16, 2010 at 9:45 am

    That is great news. Steiner + Associates and Mall Properties will also be opening a new town center in Hampton, VA on March 11. The developers announced more than 50 tenants back in late January.

    Anyone who has been trying to lease in this environment knows how big of a feat it is to get projects of any size leased and open right now. Congratulations to these developers.

  3. 3 Judith Brower February 16, 2010 at 9:55 am

    Lifestyle centers are the current name for centers with the types of retail, restaurants, and co-tenancy now desired by retailers and customers. The question is not whether or not to build a lifestyle center, but simply whether or not to build retail.

    The larger tenants operate with extreme savvy and my gut would say if the developer is obtaining signed agreements, the particular location is ready for more retail. And it is good news!

  4. 4 Chris February 16, 2010 at 10:55 am

    The lifestyle segment is too broad a category. If you look at smaller “lifestyle” centers with the wrong anchor lineup you realize some developers were simply building the “mini Mall” of the new millenium. In these instances developers were just trying to cram too much space on too small a piece of property. As ill conceived as some of these properties were, with poor anchors, poor visibility and convoluted site plans; some idiot banker decided to lend on it. Good quality Lifestyle centers with great anchors in great neighborhoods will always be successful. When we talk about a segment, any segment, being overbuilt perhaps we should dig a little deeper and note that “ill conceived lifestyle centers” were overbuilt and will suffer greatly. The best properties will always hold up through a recession.

  5. 5 Chuck Taylor February 16, 2010 at 2:24 pm

    This is great news. We at Englewood Construction (hardhatchat.com)have been showing our clients, for some time now the fact that construction costs are the lowest they been in years. We have certain trades submitting pricing that in some cases are 15% to 20% cheaper than three years ago. Couple this with the great rent deals that are out there and all of us can get back to work.

  6. 6 LC Chase February 16, 2010 at 2:35 pm

    I think any large retail moves looked at right now in this market will be looked at as “Genius” in five years. there will be plenty of finger pointing and laughing right now but those are the moves that pay off down the road. Glad to see there are still some companies expanding right now and taking the contrarian view.

  7. 7 Keith Mazikowski February 17, 2010 at 9:31 am

    This is the former site of the Randhurst shopping mall built years before the retail mecca, Woodfield Mall in Schaumburg which opened in 1971.

    Randhurst was a dying indoor mall where they had tried several makeovers. Mount Prospect is a great village with easy 20 minute access to O’Hare airport and a rail-line to downtown Chicago.

    This “Lifestyle Center” will be successful particularly if they make it a mixed use development.

  8. 8 Patrick A. Kellner, SCLS February 17, 2010 at 12:42 pm

    Ian – Building is the easy part. Leasing it takes talent! Sophisticated developers such as Casto and Steiner know what it takes to get it done. Neither is a ‘Johnny-Come-lately’ to this type of development. Both are converting and redeveloping older outdated retail formats into newer vibrant ‘town centers’. As for Chicago open-air centers such as what Casto is doing with Randhurst Village isn’t a fad. Just look at Oakbrook Center. Kudos to both Casto and Steiner for ‘recycling’ proven locations and reformatting for the consumer needs of today’s marketplace. Can’t get any ‘greener’ than that!


  1. 1 New Retail Construction Goes for the Gold in Shopping Center Development | Hard Hat Chat Trackback on February 23, 2010 at 10:53 am

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