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June 18, 2015

Nutter signs legislation paving way for Gallery renovations

The legislation includes a $55 million tax break for the project developers

Urban Planning Shopping
The Gallery Thom Carroll/PhillyVoice

A view of The Gallery at Market East.

Mayor Michael Nutter signed legislation Thursday paving the way for the $325 million redevelopment of the Gallery at Market East shopping mall.

The legislation, which includes a $55 million tax break, was finalized by City Council earlier in the day.

The developers, Pennsylvania Real Estate Investment Trust and the Macerich Company, plan to renovate the 1.5 million square-foot shopping mall over a two-year stretch. It is slated to reopen in the spring of 2017 under a new name — the Fashion Outlets of Philadelphia at Market East.

The revamped mall is expected to include 125 new stores, sidewalk cafes, digital signage and a glass-walled Center Court at Ninth and Market streets. The rebranding follows other Macerich mall projects, including the Fashion Outlets of Chicago.

Councilman Mark Squilla told KYW Newsradio that he was pleased the tax break never became contentious, saying it enables the city to remove itself from maintenance obligations.

"Having all the stakeholders involved early on sort of set the council members' minds at ease about what the benefits of the (Tax Increment Financing) are, and I think all the members see that now," Squilla said.