Simon Malls signs deal to build outlet mall in Jenks
Citizens of Jenks had questions answered last week with the news of Simon Malls officially purchasing the land for the much-anticipated outlet mall.
Simon Property Group bought the 51 acres south of the Creek Turnpike and east of Elm Street, ending speculation of whether the outlet mall would ever materialize.
Many in Jenks are happy they don’t have to ask those questions anymore.
“This is something we get questions about all the time,” Mayor Robert Lee said. “We haven’t always been able to give an answer on it just because we’ve been waiting along with everyone else. Now we have an answer and we can let people know.”
Lee said the mall is set to break ground Jan. of 2020, after re-routing utility lines.
According to sources, up to 80% of available store space has been committed. Simon Property Group wanted that much before signing paperwork to the land.
Mayor Lee confirmed that Simon wanted a large portion of the stores to be taken up before the purchase.
“That’s been a big part of the process. they want to get commitments from their tenants before Simon was willing to commit to the project,” he said. “I don’t have any specifics on stores but my understanding is that they’ll be more high-end stores like Woodland Hills, for instance.”
Multiple reports say the outlet mall is targeting an open date in early 2021.
For Jenks, opportunities the outlet mall can bring are just beginning to be realized. The impact of the increase in sales tax is among the top.
“First of all, I’m excited about the additional revenue this is going to bring to the city,” Lee said. “We rely on sales tax revenue. The fact that we have something coming that stands to generate a large amount of sales tax revenue is such a positive thing.”
Not only will the outlet mall boost sales tax numbers, many hope it will boost other Jenks businesses.
“It’s also going to bring many positive impacts to the entire area,” Lee said. “The aquarium, the downtown area and also the Riverwalk. Anything that helps them out is a good thing.
“The other benefit this brings is further development of the river district. We’ve had to wait for an answer on this until we could make plans on what we want to see for the rest of the district. Going ahead we can move ahead with some ideas there.”
For city officials, the news came with much relief. Lee says he and others have been left in the dark throughout the process.
“It’s good to have that confirmation,” he said. “But it’s certainly a relief for us because, as a leader, to the best of our knowledge, yes this is still coming and they are working on it but it’s frustrating to have to give people the same answer over and over, you lose a little bit of credibility. It’s nice to finally know.”