Redevelopment plans for Ross Park Mall OK’d
The owners of Ross Park Mall have received the go-ahead for their plans to demolish the vacant Sears store and replace it with businesses that are expand its attractiveness as a destination for more than just shopping.
Ross commissioners unanimously approved the plans on March 18.
Simon Properties, which owns the mall, plans to replace the department store with a multi-story structure that will house a movie theater, a fitness center featuring a 50-foot climbing wall, restaurants and space for additional retail shops.
The mall’s food court would also be relocated to the new building and a second building on the site would house a Restoration Hardware store.
In early February, Ross commissioners delayed a vote on granting preliminary approval for the changes because several board members wanted the company to address what they consider a long-standing problem at the site — the lack of a safe way for pedestrians to get there from McKnight Road.
Mall officials argued that adding a sidewalk would be an arduous, expensive task because there is no room on either side of the steep road leading into the site.
As a compromise, Simon has agreed to permit additional Port Authority buses that serve the Ross area to pick up and discharge passengers at the mall.
Tony LaRussa is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Tony at 724-772-6368, [email protected] or via Twitter .