New outlet center may be set for Simpsonville

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By Todd Martin

There may come a time soon when Shelby Countians don’t have to travel far for their discount shopping therapy.
Horizon Group Properties, which has offices in Chicago and Muskegon, Mich., lists the new The Outlet Shoppes at Louisville/Lexington as being available for leasing information.
The location of the center, however, is not in Louisville or Lexington, but in Simpsonville, just west of Buck Creek Road and south of Interstate 64.
David Eaton, the Simpsonville city administrator, said the Horizon Group contacted the city several months ago.
“They told us that’s what they were interested in, and they wanted to know what they’d have to do to get the property ready, with sewers and such,” Eaton said. “We told them, but we’ve never heard back from them. We thought the project was dead.”
Horizon Group runs several retail centers, including ones in Burlington, Wash., Oklahoma City and Fremont, Ind., has expansions planned in El Paso, Texas, and Gettysburg, Pa., and has development plans here, Atlanta and Laredo, Texas.
The Fremont, Ind., location, which is the closest one to Shelby County, features stores such as Aeropostale, Coach, Gap, Polo Ralph Lauren and Tommy Hilfiger, according to their Web site.
The Oklahoma City center, which just opened in August, features several of the same stores along with upscale outlets such as Brooks Brothers, and Saks Fifth Avenue OFF 5th.
The company is also the developer of a master planned community in suburban Chicago.
Repeated phone calls from The Sentinel-News to Andrew Pelmoter, the name listed for leasing information on the property, were not answered. Pelmoter is also listed as the executive vice president of Horizon Group Properties.
According to the map of the property in Simpsonville that is included on the company’s Web site, www.horizongroup.com, about of a third of the area for the proposed outlet mall is already zoned Interchange, IC, according to the Triple S Planning Commission.
Another third of the land is zoned Agricultural but is tabbed as an IC area by the Future Land Use Map in the Comprehensive Plan.
The rest of the area is Ag and is listed as Ag in the Future Land Use Map.
According to the zoning regulations for IC, in the City of Simpsonville, which does stretch south of I-64, restaurants, delicatessens and retail sales are acceptable in IC.
Triple S Executive Director Ryan Libke did say a portion of the area shown on the company’s map would need to be rezoned for use as a retail center.
Libke also said the Triple S office had not been approached by Horizon Group.
The property, according the Shelby County PVA’s office, is owned by AKDB, LLC.
The manager of that corporation is listed as John Schnatter, founder, chairman and CEO of Papa John’s Pizza. Schnatter bought roughly 600 acres in that area more than a decade ago with the idea of building a golf course.
Although the course never came about, he and the AKDB company have continued to own the property, and much of the property surrounding the proposed retail center.