Motorists along Rampart Boulevard are blocked from seeing what’s beyond the temporary walls of Tivoli Village’s undeveloped acres, but the steel girders rising above the wall are a sign of good news: the start of phase two construction.
The company behind the massive project, IDB Group — a holding company based in Tel Aviv, Israel — and PBC, its subsidiary corporation, have announced the start of phase two, which was unveiled Oct. 10 to reveal a sea of poured concrete.
“The highly anticipated construction of our second phase is now officially underway,” said Patrick Done, president of Tivoli Village. “It’s also important to say that our work has never stopped. And there’s been a great deal of activity behind the scenes, and, of course, we are now putting up steel, which is the beginning of the process that gets us to the opening of the second phase.”
Done spoke as heavy machinery whined in the background. He said the opening of phase two is scheduled for spring 2015.
“I heard somebody say earlier, ‘That’s a long ways off,’ ” Done said. “It’s not a long ways off. When you go through the construction process, it takes a little bit of time. When you go through the leasing process, it takes a little bit of time. But we are very excited … as you hear noises like this, it’s a good sign.”
The second phase adds 270,000 square feet to the shopping center. Of that amount, 200,000 will comprise stores and restaurants, and the remaining 70,000 will be class-A office space. Below the new construction will be underground parking.
“It’s wonderful to see people working again,” City Councilman Bob Beers said. “Not just the scaffolding that you can see driving by on the street, but behind the fence that lines Rampart, there’s 100 (to) 200 people walking around, working. So, it’s a good thing for the neighborhood.”
Done said market numbers meant the city’s economy is showing promise.
“We are seeing double-digit sales increases in both suburban and Strip properties in this post-recession cycle,” he said. “Subsequently, we are seeing an increased attraction to the market from national retailers, making this an opportune time to continue our construction in a more aggressive way. … Tivoli Village did not open during ideal economic times. We made the difficult decision not to mothball the development as most other developers were forced to do. Instead, we readjusted and chose to build in phases.”
Done said the numbers were good for phase one, with sales increasing by double digits year over year since opening in 2011, and traffic counts increasing 30 percent year over year. He said Tivoli Village would sign retailers that will secure it as the dominant player on the west side.
“Our plan has always been to build in phases,” Done said. “We came up with the phasing plan when the economic storm hit back in 2008. So we completed the original commitment, which was the first-phase development. As the market improved, strategy was to expand and build more retail and office space, which is what we’re doing now. And we really have adjusted our timing based on market conditions and how the markets are responding. … So when the markets went down, we slowed down. As the markets improved, we’re now moving forward. “
How does it feel to be at this point?
“It feels really good because when you’re going though those (uncertain) times, you just never know if things are going to improve and if market situations are going to get back to where they need to be,” he said. “It’s really about retailer interest in the market. When the national retailers come back, there was a time when they weren’t coming to the suburban parts of the city, but now that they’re coming back, there’s an opportunity to expand and develop. So, it’s a sign that the market’s improved.”
No specifics were given, but Tivoli Village literature said retailers in phase two would be “national fashion and apparel stores, new-to-market furnishing brands and other merchandise categories that will serve to complement the current mix of stores and restaurants.”
The announcement follows activity in phase one that added new retailers, restaurants and office tenants in the past year. Restaurants that have opened include Poppy Den by Angelo Sosa, Bradley Ogden’s Hops & Harvest, and Sam Marvin’s Echo & Rig Butcher and Steakhouse. New retailers include ANGL and Diamanti Fine Jewelers. In addition, more than 35,000 square feet of office space have been leased. Occupancy for the first phase is nearing capacity, a signal to begin phase two, Done said.
“I think the fact that we’re in the middle of an affluent market makes it easier for retailers to choose this location, so it’s all about demand,” Done said. “Other parts of the city may not have that same demand. That makes it a little bit easier, the fact that we’re in an affluent part of the market.”
After phase two completion, Tivoli Village will encompass more than 639,000 square feet.
No residential component is planned for phase two, but phase three, on the north side of the parcel, is set to have one. Original plans for the 29-acre site called for 340 condominiums. Current plans call for six-story buildings, but Done said that was not set in stone. He said he expected about 300 housing units would be built.
Heaven Yoshino, leasing manager for Tivoli Village, said the center did not need to offer incentives to attract tenants.
“The market really speaks for itself and where we’re at in the recovery,” she said. “So, for us, it’s more about providing an optimal location for tenants. The demographics are here. It’s just the economy coming back in Las Vegas, and we’re seeing that right now.”
She said large tenants are looking nationwide for their next location, and by providing them with statistics on Las Vegas’ economic draw, she and her team can educate them on what Tivoli Village offers.
“Once they see that, it really speaks for itself, and then they see our project,” she said.
Contact Summerlin/Summerlin South View reporter Jan Hogan at firstname.lastname@example.org or 702-387-2949.