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PHILADELPHIA-Two power shopping centers, each located on formerly vacant sites, begin their respective roll-out of grand openings this fall bringing major national retailers to the city. The centers, which are both developed by Blue Bell-based Goldenberg Group, are Columbus Commons, anchored by Ikea and Lowe’s, and Whitman Square with Lowe’s and Wal-Mart as anchors.

Columbus Commons is a 647,000-sf center on the former CSX railyard at Columbus Boulevard and Snyder Avenue in South Philadelphia. Ikea’s 310,000-sf unit, its first in an urban center, opened last week, and will be followed later this month by the opening of a 160,000-sf Lowe’s. Other tenants, set to open between now and November, include Linens ‘n Things, Pier 1, Best Buy and Strauss Auto. Restaurant tenants include Wendy’s, Champps, Longhorn Steakhouse and Famous Dave’s. Lowe’s and Ikea acquired land for their units from Goldenberg. The remainder of the space is leased, and just one 14,000-sf space remains available.

Whitman Square is located at 9701 Roosevelt Blvd. in the Northeast section of the city, at the former site of the Whitman Chocolate factory. It opens 100% leased. Tenants, in addition to Lowe’s and Wal-Mart, include Circuit City, Petco, Eckerd Drugs, Michael’s Crafts, and a Longhorn Steakhouse, Chick-Fil-A and Champps.

According to published reports, the development costs were $55 million for Columbus Commons and $40 million for Whitman Square. Goldenberg Group owns and manages 3.5 million sf of space and has an additional three million sf in various stages of construction and development. Among its specialties are urban community revitalization projects and acquisitions for renovation or conversion.

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