July 6 – TUSCOLA – Once more than 40 retailers, Tuscola Outlet Shops has now only 13, according to its online directory. This is down from 27 in April 2019.
But shoppers continue to visit the remaining stores, a city official said.
“There’s no question it’s down,” said city administrator J. Drew Hoel. âThe vacancies are out there. It’s sort of, number one, the natural progression of malls. Retail is down and COVID hasn’t helped.â
Neither the management nor the owners of the Tuscola outlet property were available to answer questions. The mall manager referred the calls to Mason Asset Management head office in Long Island, New York, which did not return the call to The News-Gazette.
Although the traffic at the mall may be lower, “I still see cars there, not bad, actually,” Hoel said.
Tuscola is no longer receiving sales tax information on the property of the mall and its individual stores because an old redevelopment agreement that required this information to be provided is no longer in effect, he said. .
Now, he said, “we need to look at the overall trends in income in general.”
The remaining stores, according to the mall’s website, included American Eagle Outfitters, Bath & Body Works, Carter’s, Chico’s, Coach, Famous Footwear, Maurice’s, Old Navy, Polo Ralph Lauren, Under Armor, Van Heusen, Verizon and The eggs Hanes Bali Playtex.
Mason Asset Management acquired the Tuscola Mall in 2018. It currently has a nationwide portfolio of more than 120 shopping centers, 16 of which are in Illinois.