ALPHARETTA, GA—North American Propertiesofficials say the retail component of it $600-milion mixed-useAvalon project here is 97% leased.

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The Cincinnati, OH-based firm held a “topping out” for theAvalon venture on Wednesday. North American says it has secured 15new retail leases and has long waiting lists for its residences atthe property that will also feature office development. The retailcomponent is scheduled to open on Oct. 30.

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"Avalon is the future of retail," said MarkToro, managing partner of NAP. "Creating a walkablecommunity that infuses hospitality into every aspect—this is theexperience today's retailers are attracted to, as it is what theircustomers are demanding. The fact that we are 97% leased six monthsfrom the grand opening is the most powerful indicator."

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Recently signed retail deals include leases with: J.Crew, Crate & Barrel, CalypsoSt. Barth, Bantu,LensCrafters, BCBG,Sunglass Hut, Road Runner Sports,Soft Surroundings, J. Jill,Goldberg's Deli, J. McLaughlin,Boston Proper, Lou & Grey andColumbia Sportswear.

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"The interest we have had in our residential product has beennothing short of spectacular," says RichardMunger, development partner at NAP. "We recently releasedfloor plans for 250 luxury rentals and received 900 waiting listrequests within three weeks. Our 101 unit for-sale offering,released last summer, has accumulated a list of over 2,600 familiesseeking the Avalon experience."

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Avalon is a sustainably designed 2.4-million-square-foot projectbeing built on an 86-acre parcel that will feature more than500,000 square feet of retail, a 12-screen all premium theater,conference center and full-service hotels, Class A office space,single-family residences and luxury rental homes.

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John Jordan

John Jordan is a veteran journalist with 36 years of print and digital media experience.