Metro St. Louis Preps for Largest Shopping Center in Years

GBT Realty has begun work on the 270,000-square-foot The Shoppes at Mid Rivers, the largest retail project in the area since 2008.

By Barbra Murray, Contributing Editor

The Shoppes at Mid Rivers, courtesy of GBT Realty Corp.
The Shoppes at Mid Rivers, courtesy of GBT Realty Corp.

St. Louis—There’s something big coming to suburban St. Louis, and GBT Realty Corp. is behind it. The commercial development company just completed the acquisition of a 28-acre site in St. Peters, Mo., paving the way for construction of the 270,000-square-foot The Shoppes at Mid Rivers, the largest retail development to sprout up in the St. Louis MSA since 2008.

The Shoppes, which will reportedly cost approximately $54 million to complete, is already receiving a warm welcome. The city of St. Peters provided GBT with a bundle of incentives valued at as much as $10 million, and a series of national retailers have staked a claim to space at the three-anchor power center in advance of the start of construction. Businesses on the tenant roster will include Academy Sports + Outdoor Burlington, Ross Dress for Less, Marshalls, Home Goods, Ulta Beauty, and the list goes on, leaving just 30,000 square feet and four outparcels to be snapped up.

As for bringing in the shoppers, The Shoppes has on its side one of the most important attributes of any commercial real estate project: location. “Immediately north of Interstate 70 and facing the only regional mall in the county, the center will have unparalleled frontage, access and visibility to the more than 138,000 cars passing the site on a daily basis,” Jeff Pape, managing director of GBT Realty Corp.’s shopping center division, said in a prepared statement. The property is in the middle of it all, positioned at the mouth of St. Charles County’s leading retail corridor.

The climate is also right for The Shoppes. In the third quarter, the area’s retail vacancy rate continued on the downswing, dropping to 5.8 percent in St. Charles County and 6.3 percent in metropolitan St. Louis, according to a report by commercial real estate services firm Newmark Grubb Zimmer. “With decreasing vacancy rates, substantial net absorption and increasing rental rates, the metropolitan St. Louis retail market continues to show signs of improvement and is well-positioned going into the fall shopping season,” per the report. “Limited available space in active retail corridors and shopping centers will continue to drive vacancy lower and begin to force retail rates higher.”

GBT will commence construction of The Shoppes immediately, with plans of delivering the project in late 2017.