Butler employs social media to tame Irma’s effects
As Hurricane Irma moved northward up the Florida peninsula, Butler Enterprises was ready with a plan to use social media to keep beleaguered Gainesville residents supplied with necessities.
On Sept. 5, director of marketing Mary Reichardt put Butler Plaza’s Facebook and Twitter accounts to work as emergency notification services. At the height of the flooding and power outages in Gainesville, Butler posted ongoing updates on which stores at its nearly 300-acre complex had received supplies of gas, water, flashlights, batteries and bread.
Updates continue to be posted by Butler as locals still labor to take things back to normal.
“At first, I and the property manager did regular tours of the stores and posted photos and reports of products on shelves,” Reichardt said. “Before long we started receiving updates directly from tenants like Lowe’s because their customers were coming in and telling them they’d read on the Shop at Butler Facebook page that they had lumber.”
The same occurred when Sam’s Club received the first truckload of gasoline to enter Gainesville post-storm.
One Facebook friend posted a thank-you note on the Facebook page that said, “Not only is Butler Plaza the best place to shop in Gainesville, you also performed a valuable public service in a very difficult time.”
A side-benefit for Butler was forging new bonds with tenants. “Our relationships grew significantly because of the storm,” Reichardt said.
Burlington to open in Sears hole at Magnolia Mall
PREIT announced that it has fully leased the space vacated by Sears at Magnolia Mall, nine months after the store closed shop at the Florence, South Carolina, property.
Burlington opens in a 46,000-sq.-ft. space there this week. It will be joined by HomeGoods (20,000 sq. ft.) and Five Below (8,500 sq. ft.) in the spring. Also slated to open at that time is a 20,000-sq.-ft. H&M store.
"At Magnolia Mall, the addition of these in-demand retailers will attract additional shoppers and welcome them to an enhanced mall experience," said Joseph F. Coradino, CEO of PREIT.
Food and bed highlight OKC center’s expansion
Three restaurants and a hotel claimed four of the seven new out-parcels The Market at Czech Hall in Oklahoma City.
Developer GBT Realty announced that Hooters, Arby’s, Cheddar’s Scratch Kitchen, and Sleep Inn have signed leases at the 160,000-sq.-ft. “regional neighborhood center” on Interstate 40.
“National names such as Academy Sports + Outdoors, Marshalls, and Ross Dress for Less jumped on board early before the center was developed and have continued to be top performers here,” said GBT leasing director Fraser Schaufele, who credited OKC’s high population growth rate and low unemployment rate.
Other tenants include GNC, Pearl Vision, Petco, Ulta Beauty, Rack Room Shoes, and Five Below.