Monday, 28 December 2020 14:02

Burkes Outlet coming to Richmond Plaza

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The former J.C. Penny property will occupy Burkes Outlet and Hibbett sports this coming spring, according to C.F. Smith Property Group. The former J.C. Penny property will occupy Burkes Outlet and Hibbett sports this coming spring, according to C.F. Smith Property Group. RO file photo

ROCKINGHAM — A new store is coming to Richmond Plaza to fill part of the vacant property left by the recent closing of J.C. Penney.


C.F. Smith Property Group announced Monday that Burkes Outlet has signed a lease and will be opening a location in the plaza in early 2021.

“We’re real excited to bring them to Richmond Plaza and the community here to obviously fill the void that Penney’s left,” said C.F. Smith CEO Neil Robinette.

Burke’s Outlet has more than 400 locations including in nearby Laurinburg, Southern Pines and Fayetteville.

Robinette said Burkes will occupy a majority of the former J.C. Penney space and the remainder is being leased to Hibbett Sports.

“They really wanted to expand their store here and we haven’t really found a good option for them to do that until now,” Robinette said. “So it worked out where Burkes’ … prototype doesn’t quite require the full 37,000 (square) feet that Penney’s was in … It really, really works out great for us to help a good tenant out, get better situated, and bring a really good off-price retailer into the market as well.”

With that move, it will leave Hibbett’s current space available.

Robinette said the less-than-4,000 square-foot store located in the center of the shopping center should be an attractive location for potential lessees.

The plaza also has a few other openings with the closing of GNC following bankruptcy earlier this year and of Foot Locker.

One local business — Christie’s Home, Garden, Gifts — also recently closed its doors.

“We’re definitely sad to see her go,” Robinette said. “(We) appreciate her passion for starting the business and what it takes to start a retail shop up from scratch, the risk she took on to do so.”

Robinette added that the merchandising was great, but it was “tough timing” that took it out.

“She gave it a great effort,” he added.

There is also the former Freedom Fitness space and a corner property that remains vacant.

“We had some interest in that, but it just didn’t pan out for whatever reason,” Robinette said. “It doesn’t work for all users just because it doesn’t have the visibility ...some other users would like to see, but we’re really hoping to find a cool concept that can energize that courtyard area a little bit.”

In the past several years, Richmond Plaza has brought in several national retailers, including Roses, Rainbow and Rue 21, and has recently added Planet Fitness, Firehouse Subs and Aspen Dental.

It also boasts local and regional stores including Gifts 4 All Seasons, Our Southern Roots and Pee Dee Outfitters. While Merle Norman is a national brand, the store is locally owned and operated.

“2020 was a tough year for this shopping center, given the tenant mix,” Robinette said. “COVID has been especially hard on small businesses as well as large retailers … a lot of the users here have been impacted extra-hard.”

But there are others, he added, that have done well and are growing.

“I think Burkes will provide a different and pretty exciting merchandise offering,” he said.

While there is no date yet set, Robinette said the target opening is sometime in the spring.

 

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Last modified on Monday, 28 December 2020 18:53