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BLOOMINGTON, MN-The Mall of America has recently added several majortenants and has plans to double its size in plans mall officials hope to finalize in the upcoming months. Developers are busy planning for the expansion that will take place in the next few years as major tenants such as [email protected] Mall and Apple Computer finish their move in.

Home shopping giant QVC, known for selling fine fashions, jewelry and home accessories via television broadcast and through its Internet site, is expanding its pilot store, [email protected] Mall, which opened earlier this month. QVC plans to operate a studio and air live TV broadcasts from their 2,500-sf store.

“Our pilot store proved to be the answer for shoppers who like our products but wanted to touch and feel them before purchasing,” says [email protected] Mall VP Nan Russell.

The Apple store also recently opened and offers an interesting way to buy a computer. Rather than just hear about megahertz and megabytes, customers can now learn and experience the things they can actually do with a computer, like make movies, burn custom music CDs and publish their digitalphotos on a personal website. The Apple store is organized into sections to make it easy for both the novice and computer-savvycustomers.

Mall of America also has attracted some other newventures including 911 Marketplace, a specialty-gift store for police officers, firefighters and emergency personnel; Dogs R Us, a bakery specializing in treats for your favorite pooch; and Air to Go, an oxygen bar, where people can get a hit of flavored oxygen to give them a healthy boost.

Last year, officials with Simon Property Group, which manages and is a major owner in the local property, said its tenants generated more than $860 million. The mall contributed an economic boost to Minnesota’s economy estimated by mall officials at nearly $2 billion last year alone.

Since opening in August of 1992, more than 350 million visitors have visited Mall of America. In addition to more than 520 stores, the Mall is home to the nation’s largest indoor theme park, a 12-lane bowling club, a 14-screen movie theater and a 1.2-million-gallon walk-through aquarium.

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