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EARLIER: Paragon Outlet partners with Trio for its mall project

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Public meeting will be held at Simpsonville gym Thursday

By Todd Martin

Just as Trio Property Management and Water Street Development are getting ready to discuss the development of a 400,000-square-foot outlet mall on an 82-acre site in south Simpsonville, the companies have announced a new partnership.

On Tuesday they announced they have signed a contract with Paragon Outlet Partners LLC to develop the site.

“We are now under contract with Paragon to act as our lead outlet mall developer,” said Bill Bardenwerper, a development attorney with Bardenwerper Talbott & Roberts who has been brought on board to coordinate the project. “Paragon officials are all involved this week in opening a new mall in [Grand Prairie] Texas. So our timing of this meeting and Paragon’s grand opening conflicted. But Jon Addington, from BTM Engineering, and I will be presenting [Thursday] and answering questions [at the meeting].”

On Thursday, community members once again will get to voice their opinions on the outlet mall concept, with another open meeting at the Simpsonville Community Gym, this time on the second proposed site.

This approach is nearly identical to the route taken by the Horizon Group Properties, which has already submitted plans for an outlet mall to the Triple S Planning Commission. The Horizon plan calls for a 364,000-square-foot retail center, called Outlet Shoppes of Louisville, directly west across Buck Creek Road from Trio’s proposed site.

Development has been in the planning stages for about a year for Trio’s center, which also would include room for seven out lots and the potential to grow beyond its 82-acre lot into a 10-acre area along Buck Creek Road between the development and I-64.

Paragon Outlet Partners is a Baltimore-based company that is in the process of opening two outlet centers this year and owns the renovated Destination Orlando, which draws 12 million visitors annually.

Paragon’s newest center, in Grand Prairie, Texas, a 420,000-square-foot center just west of Dallas, will open on Friday with more than 100 retailers. The second new center, a 500,000-square-foot center in Livermore Valley, Calif., just outside San Francisco and Oakland, will open in November.

The company was founded by former executives from Prime Retail who left the company after it was sold to remain on the project at Grand Prairie, which is one of eight large retail projects opening nationwide this year.

The company counts large upscale retailers such as Saks Fifth Avenue OFF 5th, Michael Kors, Brooks Brothers Factory Store, Bloomingdale’s Outlet, Coach, Cole Haan, True Religion Jeans and more as retail partners.

The Trio and Water Street meeting on Thursday is similar in design to Horizon’s meeting held in June. At that meeting about 100 residents came out to voice mostly displeasure in the development and its potential effects on the area, including traffic and the countryside.

After this meeting, which is not required by law, the group still has to submit a zone change request and preliminary development plan to the Triple S Planning Commission.

Of the 82-acre site, only about 16 acres are property zoned for an outlet center. The other 66 acres are zoned agricultural and would need to be rezoned before the project could move forward.

Horizon had its zone change request public hearing on 24 acres zoned Agricultural in July, and Triple S should make a recommendation to the Simpsonville City Commission at next Tuesday’s meeting after tabling its recommendation last month.

Neighborhood meeting

What:Trio Property Management and Water Street Partners Development will have an open meeting to discuss their plans for developing an 82-acre site on Buck Creek Road south of I-64 with an outlet mall.

When:Thursday, 7 p.m.

Where:Simpsonville Community Gym, 104 Old Veechdale Road