By Nick Gilbert
Howard Hughes has plans to upgrade the Riverwalk Marketplace into an upper-class outlet center which will be called The Outlet Collection at Riverwalk.
The President of Howard Hughes stated that the redevelopment of this riverfront property will usher many new brand outlets and entertainment establishments to New Orleans. He further expressed pride in being part of the redevelopment which will give New Orleans a new vibrant life.
About $70 million has been set aside by Howard Hughes towards the redevelopment program with plans to expand the retail outlet by about 50,000 sq. ft. The Outlet Collection at Riverwalk will exhibit the already existing national brands and also certain local retail, dining and entertainment choices. Many of the brand outlets will have their shops for the first time in downtown surroundings, especially in Louisiana, New Orleans, and the Gulf region.
The New Orleans market has been in need of branded retail outlets for quite some time. Also, the current marketplace has not been through any major renovation since its inauguration in 1986. The work on the project will commence further in 2012. It is scheduled to reopen toward late 2013.
Rod Miller, President and CEO of the New Orleans Business Alliance, mentioned the importance the project will have in upgrading the New Orleans market and promises their cooperation with the project and the city in sustaining this project and such future ventures in the region.
Councilmember Kristin Gisleson Palmer pointed out the perfect location of the Outlet Collection at Riverwalk with easy access to anyone from both East and West banks which will provide immense opportunities for the growth of the New Orleans retail segment in the long run and further improvement of the riverfront locale.