Expansion Begins At Macdade Mall The Acme Will Double Its Space To Become A Superstore. Stores Will Stay Open During Construction.

Posted: January 03, 1995

HOLMES — MacDade Mall operators and tenants are ringing in the new year with a renovation project that will give the 24-year-old shopping center a new facade and enlarge its anchor store.

Construction began yesterday on the 259,962-square-foot mall at MacDade Boulevard and South Avenue in Ridley Township. It should be completed by October.

The cornerstone of the project is the expansion and remodeling of the Acme Market, which will increase the store's size by 50 percent. Acme had requested that the mall renovate to accommodate its new superstore design.

Along with expanded produce, deli, bakery, frozen food, grocery and floral departments, the store will include in-store banking, a courtesy center, and more check-out counters. The store will be open during the construction.

Leo Shapiro, founder of Shapiro & Associates, a Chicago-based market research firm, said superstores had been successful because of the trend toward customer convenience and one-stop shopping.

Nola Strauss, assistant director of marketing services for Montgomery Group, the mall's management company, said customers were seeking a place where all their needs could be met in one visit. Time constraints are often placed on people with families and jobs, she said.

"A number of stores are expanding to keep up with market trends," Strauss said. "We're just trying to accommodate the community's needs and serve them the best we can."

According to the New York-based International Council for Shopping Centers, construction of new shopping centers and strip malls has dropped dramatically over the last six years. Renovation of older centers is the current trend.

MacDade Mall secretary Stephanie Blythe said she expected the renovation to increase the mall's sales and the number of tenants. The mall houses about 35 stores, but five more stores could be added, she said.

"Business has been normal, but we're always looking for an increase," Blythe said.

Along with a new entrance, the renovated mall will offer larger space for Fashion Bug, The Wall and Radio Shack and a new 7,500-square-foot Dollar Express store.

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