burlingtontowncenter
DEVELOPMENT/REDEVELOPMENT

Vermont mall project back on track with Rouse involvement

BY Al Urbanski

Rouse properties has announced plans to enter into a joint venture agreement with Devonwood Investors in the transformation of an outdated Burlington, Vermont, mall into a mixed-use center. The deal is expected to be closed in the coming weeks.

Burlington Town Center, a traditional enclosed mall in the center of the state’s largest city, is to be converted into a modern apartment block including restaurants and an upgraded retail component.

Rouse’s involvement gives Devonwood a cash infusion that will bring it to the $225 million needed to proceed with the project. “This significant investment from Rouse is a testament to the strength of this redevelopment project,” said Porter Terry, Director at Holliday Fenoglio Fowler, the financing agent for the Burlington Town Center redevelopment.

In the making for years, Devonwood’s plan met with disapproval from members of the Burlington community who opposed the building height of the project. Design changes were implemented in 2015 and 2016 to address citizen’s concerns, and the City of Burlington approved plans that include:

  • 131,994 sq. ft. of new retail space;
  • 274 housing units;
  • 210,831 sq. ft. of office space; and
  • expanded parking areas and a solar roof canopy

“After years of public process and debate that have vastly improved the project, it is time to start rebuilding the core of our downtown for the benefit of all our residents,” said Burlington Mayor Miro Weinberger. “This transformative project is now on the cusp of replacing a dated and failing suburban mall with a vibrant mixed use neighborhood.”


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meijer
ECOMMERCE

Retailer takes home delivery into a new state

BY Deena M. Amato-McCoy

Meijer is putting its home delivery expansion plan into motion.

Meijer is preparing to launch its home delivery service throughout Ohio. The service will launch in Cincinnati and Dayton on April 27; Columbus on May 4; and Toledo later this summer.

Through its partnership with online grocery marketplace Shipt, Meijer customers can shop more than 55,000 items using the Shipt app on iOS or Android devices, or online. A Shipt shopper will hand pick their items and deliver them in as little as one hour after the order is placed.

Shipt memberships are available for an annual fee of $99, and orders over $35 qualify for free delivery. Orders under $35 have a $7 delivery fee.

To encourage Ohio-based shoppers to sign up for an annual membership prior to the service’s launch, Shipt is offering $25 off of new customers’ first order, Meijer reported.

The grocer initially launched home delivery across 25 participating Detroit-area Meijer stores in September. The Ohio launch coincides with Meijer’s plan to expand the service across its six-state footprint, which in addition to Michigan and Ohio, includes Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, and Wisconsin.

Since the program launched in Michigan, the partners have filled more than 90,000 orders, the grocer said.

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Walmart_pickup
ECOMMERCE

Walmart turns up the heat on Amazon with new discounting program

BY Deena M. Amato-McCoy

Walmart has fired another shot at Amazon.

In a move that leverages the retail giant’s vast store and delivery networks and expanding online capabilities, Walmart, starting April 19, will begin offering a discount on merchandise that customers buy online and have shipped to a Walmart store for pick-up. Walmart’s new Pickup Discount program will initially be available only on about 10,000 items, but will be expanded to more than one million of the chain’s most popular items by the end of June.

Here’s how it works: Customers shop an item notated with “pickup discount” and ship to their local store for pick up. The shoppers will then receive a discount based on each individual item.

The discounts will vary. Walmart offered a few examples: Lego City Great Vehicles Ferry, which sells for $23.99, will have a pick-up discount of $2.55; a Britax infant car seat that sells for $148.05 will have a discount of $7.40. Larger items will offer bigger discounts: a Vizio television that has a $1,698 price tag will offer a discount of $50.

The new feature was inspired by the Smart Cart technology developed by Jet.com, the e-commerce retailer Walmart acquired in September. The technology, which used an algorithm to drive discounts, offered on a variety of ways shoppers could save on their purchases. (The founder of Jet.com, Marc Lore, is now the president and CEO of Walmart’s U.S. e-commerce.)

The program takes “the ethos behind Jet’s Smart Cart and marries it with Walmart’s operational efficiency to bring price transparency to life at walmart.com,” Lore wrote in a blog on Walmart’s website.

“We can remove the last mile delivery costs (that represent the lion’s share of the costs to ship products to customers’ homes) when we leverage our fleet of more than 6,700 trucks to deliver products directly from fulfillment centers to our 4,700 stores,” Lore added. “This means, quite simply, it costs less for us to ship to stores. So, our customers should share in those savings.”

The new pickup discount complements the Walmart’s Online Grocery Pickup service, which is now in 600 stores. The chain plans to expand the service to an additional 500 stores this year, according to Lore.

“We already offer great prices online,” Lore said. “We do that every day. Offering a discount on Pickup demonstrates how we can take that to the next level by operating more efficiently and removing costs from the system to give customers even more ways to save.”

The service comes as the shipping and pricing wars between Walmart and Amazon intensify. In a move to counter Amazon Prime, Walmart recently eliminated its ShippingPass program in favor of a free two-day shipping program.

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D.Alves says:
Apr-21-2017 01:45 pm

Vendor/supplier discount practices
One has to wonder on the spread of margins are between retailers? Other large retailers should be questioning pricing practices to see if it is unfair....

D.Alves says:
Apr-21-2017 01:45 pm

One has to wonder on the spread of margins are between retailers? Other large retailers should be questioning pricing practices to see if it is unfair....

B.Jolley says:
Apr-18-2017 03:05 pm

I'm not necessarily a Walmart
I'm not necessarily a Walmart fan but I do enjoy the competition they are giving Amazon. Very forward looking rather than what most other retailers are doing--looking from the sidelines.

B.Jolley says:
Apr-18-2017 03:05 pm

I'm not necessarily a Walmart fan but I do enjoy the competition they are giving Amazon. Very forward looking rather than what most other retailers are doing--looking from the sidelines.

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