- change ups
Chain plans 80-store outlet center in West Michigan
A national chain of outlet shopping centers has mapped out its plan for an 80-store development in West Michigan.
Greensboro, N.C.-based Tanger Factory Outlet Centers is planning an 80-store outlet shopping center, with 1,700 parking spaces, in Byron Township.
The center would create 800-1,100 jobs.
The center would open in late summer or early fall of 2015 and be one of the largest economic developments for Byron Township in years, said Audrey Nevins Weiss, township supervisor.
Tanger Outlets operates a national chain of outlet centers and two in Michigan: Howell to the east and West Branch to the north.
Tanger approached Byron Township through Barton Hunter of Vision Streak back in April, Weiss said, offering to develop and build a center at the 30-acre site of the former Dome World, at 84th Street and U.S. 131.
Eighty percent of the store spaces are already spoken for, Weiss said, but due to contractual obligations, she couldn't disclose what stores are planned.
Any businesses that want a space at the center have to contact Tanger.
Weiss said the whole community is thrilled about the news and all the businesses that could pop up around it.
“I would definitely see hotels and motels coming to the area now,” Weiss said. “That way, people can spend the day at the outlet mall and go to Gun Lake and the casino. It’s definitely going to be an attraction for West Michigan.”
As for Tanger itself, Weiss checked on its reputation in Howell and said she heard nothing but excellent reviews.
“Tanger has been very good to work with,” Weiss said. “They’ve really done their homework and researched all avenues."
Weiss said the only concerns she sees might be an explosion of traffic to the area, but that’s an issue Tanger can work to solve.
Aside from that, no major issue stands in the way of the development, Weiss said.
“We’re very excited for the community of Byron Township,” Weiss said. “We look forward to them coming in.”
Tanger submitted its development application this month and is waiting for an Oct. 21 planning commission meeting, where the application will be reviewed.
A decision on the development will be made after a Nov. 18 public meeting and could come on Jan. 1, 2014, Weiss said — followed by construction next summer.
“It was sports complex, and in order to have it, they have to get a special permit for allowed use,” Weiss said. “When Dome World closed, the site reverted back to agricultural use, but the township has it in the master plan as commercial. So this is commercial use.”