Every store in the new Denver Premium Outlet might not have been open when developers and city officials cut the ribbon Sept. 27 — but most of them were. “We were actually farther along than we …
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Every store in the new Denver Premium Outlet might not have been open when developers and city officials cut the ribbon Sept. 27 — but most of them were.
“We were actually farther along than we usually are,” Stephen Yalof, chief executive officer of Simon Premium Outlets said. “I’m pretty impressed with what we’ve accomplished.”
Yalof was joined by Thornton Mayor Heidi Williams to cut the ribbon on the new mall at 136th Avenue and Interstate 25, capping a year’s worth of construction and three years of planning.
Crews began working on the project — which boasts at 330,000 square feet of retail space and room for 80 retail outlet stores — in October 2017.
More than 60 of the outlets were ready for the grand opening, Yalof said, and the rest should be open in time for holiday shopping.
The work came to a crescendo the night before the ribbon-cutting, with Simon’s maintenance staff installing lights and decorations and testing the sound system for opening-day festivities, and retailers scurrying to get stores ready to open.
Indianapolis-based Simon operates retail operations throughout the country, ranging from luxury malls to mills — like Lakewood’s Colorado Mills — and premium outlets.
Thornton’s new outlet mall features high-end retailers like Ann Taylor, Calvin Klein, Merrell shoes and Vineyard Vines as well as Nike and Under Armour. Yalof said it features the only Old Navy Outlet in the Denver market.
Like the Colorado Mills, the new mall is built in a single-level racetrack design. Customers can enter the oval-shaped mall from any direction, walk around the arcade past every store and wind up back where they started.
But Denver Premium Outlets is an open-air mall, with covered spaces interspersed throughout the racetrack and a crack that runs east-to-west down the middle and leads to the food pavilion. That’s designed to highlight mountain views, he said.
“The racetrack design is really Simon’s model because it offers continuous circulation for our customers,” said Peter Poruczynski, Simon’s director of architecture. “But the difference here is how we cracked the egg and creaked the buildings open so we could promote those views and have transparent materials to show the energy that’s really going on here.”
The north end is marked by public art and playgrounds. The center commissioned four sculptures situated throughout the property. The sculptures, known as “Solar Arch,” “Roca,” “Looper 2” and “Alignment,” are the collective work of three notable sculptors, University of Colorado graduate Troy Pillow, Joseph Rastovich and Albert Dicruttalo.
An outdoor children’s playground caps off the development’s north end, featuring areas for kids of all ages, ranging from a dinosaur-themed climbing area for younger kids and a 30-foot climbing feature for older kids.
Two restaurants in the food pavilion were ready to go at the grand opening, with a third almost ready and a large sit-down style pizzeria still in the works.
“And the rest, we’re going to be bringing in food trucks,” Yalof said.
The grand opening kicked off a weekend of celebrations, with live music, games, giveaways and fireworks on Sept. 29.
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