Opening next fall, the Shops at West End will attract many

Shannon Cunnien

Duke Realty began a new development at the southwest corner of I-394 and Highway 100 call The Shops at West End. The developers hope that many of their new and different attractions in the mall will bring people to the Shops at West End over other malls.

Going smoothly and on schedule, the construction causes the developers no need for worry. However, they knew the building site, formerly available for lease for quite some time due to previous development deals that didn’t work or fell through, would pose some difficulties. 

“[The construction] includes demolition of existing structures, relocation and construction of utilities, soil correction, tight quarters with adjacent road reconstruction work on Park Place Boulevard, and more,” said Sean Walther, senior planner for the city of St. Louis Park and primary staff person on approvals for the project. 

Once built, the mall will include numerous attractions to draw people to the mall in. “There will be a state of the art 14-screen movie theater, gourmet grocery store, numerous sit down restaurants, upscale retailers, and an attractive pedestrian atmosphere,” said Walther.

Not only numerous, the malls attractions will be specific to the Shops at West End. The developer, Duke Realty, and their partner, Jeffrey R. Anderson Real Estate, are trying to target unique retailers for the mall. “[They] are targeting retailers and restaurants that are either new to the Minnesota market, or successful local business people unveiling new concepts,” said Walther.

On top of their superficial attractions, the developers for the Shops at West End want to positively impact the world around them by using “green” development elements. “For example, during the construction, concrete from demolished buildings was ground and used for road base,” said Walther. 

Other “green” elements include a green roof, slot drains in sidewalks to irrigate street trees, and storm water management plans that will assure less pollution to nearby lakes.

Not only does the mall include “green” elements, but the developers thought about influencing the community around them to be green as well. “The development has over a hundred bicycle parking stalls, and accommodates bus service and shelters,” said Walther.

The entire mall will open on September 15, 2009 with the grocery store scheduled to open about a month before that.