City of Sterling Heights leadership is continuing to take proactive planning measures to ensure a vibrant future for Lakeside Mall, historically the City’s largest retail hub.
The latest efforts include working with a consultant to prepare a thorough Urban Design Plan for Lakeside as well as visits to successful revamped former brick and mortar mall locations.
City leadership has been strategically planning the future of the Lakeside area for a number of years, including formulating the Lakeside Sustainability Plan in 2015, administering a retail Market Study with E Smith Partners in 2016 and continuing sustained targeted outreach to retailers and developers interested in the Lakeside area. Nationally, brick and mortar retail malls are declining and many have closed as consumers are continuing to gravitate to Internet sales.
Through a land use planning process, the City engaged the services of Wade Trim Associates and Archive DS to develop a sustainability assessment for Lakeside Mall and presented two concept plans for its redevelopment. One of the concepts included retaining the mall in its current form and developing the vast parking areas around it for additional commercial, office and residential uses. The second concept depicted a complete redevelopment of the mall property that retains anchor tenants and supplements the site with a mix of uses.
As a continuation of this effort, the Sterling Heights City Council approved a proposal in January 2018 to further engage with Wade Trim Associates and Archive DS to prepare an official “Urban Design Plan” for Lakeside Mall. The plan is to be developed with City Administration, the current owner of Lakeside Mall and select regional business, healthcare and education leaders. The Lakeside Urban Design Plan will be a key ingredient in the formation of Planned Unit Development (PUD) paving the way for a re-imagined Lakeside Mall.
City Council will be considering the PUD this fall. To enhance the review process, a contingent of City leaders and key personnel are visiting a mixed-use urban development in Lakewood, Colo. next week in a proactive effort to learn from the highly successful Belmar Shopping and Dining District redevelopment project. Specifically, Sterling Heights leadership hopes to glean insight into how key stakeholders worked together to transform a failing traditional retail mall into a vibrant city center focused on walkability, placemaking and community.
Members of the City Council, Planning Commission and City Staff will tour the Belmar Shopping and Dining District on June 25 and June 26 and meet with Lakewood officials, developers and other key partners to learn more about the multi-faceted development process involved in creating this spectacular redevelopment district. The site visit will help establish a vision for transforming Lakeside Mall into a fully functioning mixed-use district. The tour will focus upon key design elements, including street conditions, grand entrances, parking options, mixed-use structures, integration of residential use, building material options, pedestrian experience, green space and more.
Sterling Heights Mayor Michael C. Taylor said he’s looking forward to learning from the Belmar project in Lakewood, Colo. and bringing back concrete ideas for the future of Lakeside Mall.
“This learning experience will help prepare Sterling Heights leadership to position Lakeside for future prosperity and success,” Taylor said. “We’re being proactive in seeking redevelopment solutions that support our Visioning 2030 plan as well as the future of retail.”
According to City’s Senior Economic Development Advisor, Luke Bonner, a redevelopment project of this magnitude could equate to hundreds of millions of dollars just for construction.
“The economic impact to the region could far exceed the construction value,” Bonner said.” We must do all that we can to preserve this critical tax base and increase the job base of 1,500 currently supported by Lakeside Mall.”
Information about Belmar can be found at www.belmarcolorado.com and on the City of Lakewood’s website here https://tinyurl.com/yd978thw. A video showcasing the Belmar development, produced by Contiunuum Partners is available here
https://youtu.be/FzJRUMO43Tk. The Lakeside Sustainability Assessment can be found at www.sterling-heights.net/lakeside. Those with questions or those seeking more information can contact Community Relations Director Bridget Kozlowski at
firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling (586) 446-2471. ###