Fresh Thyme – not a single store chain here any longer

Fresh Thyme opens their second Minnesota store today in Apple Valley. This 28,000 sf store opened at the Fischer Marketplace on Highway 42, just east of Cedar Avenue. Fischer Marketplace is owned by Principal Life Insurance Company and is represented by Jim Larson of Cushman & Wakefield/NorthMarq.

Two more Fresh Thyme stores will open this year, with locations in Vadnais Heights and Savage under construction. Plymouth, St. Louis Park, West St. Paul and Waite Park (St. Cloud area) have planned openings in 2017.

The Original Pancake House to Open New Location in Minnetonka

The Original Pancake House will open a new restaurant in the 7-Hi Shopping Center at the northwest corner of Highways 7 and 101 in Minnetonka.

The restaurant, which has five locations throughout the Twin Cities and more than 100 nationwide, plans to open this September at 7-Hi in the 6,250 square foot space formerly occupied by Hurricane Grill & Wings. The center is anchored by U.S. Bank, Caribou Coffee and Wendy’s and is immediately south of a Super Target store.

Property owner 7-Hi Retail LLC was represented in lease negotiations by Peter Armbrust, Associate Director for Cushman & Wakefield/NorthMarq. The property is also managed by Cushman & Wakefield/NorthMarq.

We Are the Center of Retail

With the DTZ/Cushman & Wakefield merger, our booth now covers two blocks here at 2016 ICSC Recon deal making in Las Vegas.   We have over 400 retail professionals and more than 1,000 meetings happening here over the next two days.   If you’re here, stop by and say hello!



J.Crew Mercantile to open Shoppes at Knollwood on June 1

Calling all J.Crew fans!   A new “J.Crew Mercantile” retail concept is opening June 1 at CWN-managed Shoppes at Knollwood, located in St. Louis Park.

J.Crew Mercantile plans to celebrate its June 1 grand opening with an all-day in-store event. Shoppers that day will get 20 percent off purchases of $125 or more.

The new tenant joins a growing list of retailers to open at the renovated Shoppes at Knollwood, which last year went through a 10-month renovation that transformed the nearly 60-year-old, 456,554 sq. ft. enclosed mall into a power center with most retailers facing the street. The complex is anchored by Kohl’s and Cub Foods, with TJ Maxx, Old Navy and DSW in junior box plots. Other new additions since the “de-malling” include Nordstrom Rack, Ulta Beauty, Torrid and Smashburger, among others.


As Predicted…

Sports Authority filed a new bankruptcy filing stating it will be closing all of its stores, including the 8 located here in Minnesota. Fortune had reported back in March that 140 stores would be closed and hoped to find a buyer for the remaining 300+ stores. That didn’t happen, finding only buyers for the furniture and inventory assets. Sports Authority clearly struggled to compete against the big boxes, in a corporate environment of high debt load from a leveraged buyout 10 years prior.

Time to Primp!

Michele Henry & Wesley Uthus will be opening two more of their successful Primp stores, adding to their current cache of 7 stores. Sioux Falls will open next in June on Phillips Avenue and Mankato will open in the next 60 days in the Tailwind building, located downtown. To the envy of most of their competitors, we’re sure, they do it 100% debt free!

And the donut wars begin . . .

The Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal is reporting that the first Dunkin’ Donuts lease has been signed in the Twin Cities. Franchisee Kod Kod Enterprises will be opening in New Hope at the intersection of 42nd and Winnetka, near the new HyVee supermarket. Java Properties will demolish the Gas N Splash car wash currently on the site and construct a new building with a drive-thru for Dunkin. Kod Kod Enterprises was represented by Molly Townsend and Ted Gonsier of Colliers. Construction should start in June.

New Cub Foods Opens in Oakdale Today

Cub Foods opens their relocated store at Bergen Plaza in Oakdale today.   This corporate store is over 70,000 sf, and showcases upgraded perishables along with full service deli, meat and seafood departments.  New offerings added to this store include bulk honey and olive oil bars.  It was also just announced that the Big Thrill Factory is going to go in to the former Cub Foods location.  Big Thrill currently has a successful store at Hwys. 101 and 7 in Minnetonka that opened 3 years ago. 

Cub has been aggressive with their new store growth, with a corporate store opening in White Bear Lake last December and a new location now under construction in Blaine west.

Cub1 Cub2


Andover and Lakeville Retail Centers Sell to Investors

Cushman & Wakefield/NorthMarq completed sales of two Twin Cities shopping centers in April of 2016:  Andover Station and Lakeville Retail Center.  Leah Maurer, Director, represented the sellers in both of these transactions. 

Andover Station is a anchored by Festival Foods at 2218 Bunker Lake Boulevard in Andover, Minnesota.  This 75,000 sf center is 98% leased and includes Dollar Tree, Belli Capelli, Farrell’s Extreme Body Shaping along with other small shops, with Brad Kaplan leasing the center, also of Cushman & Wakefield/NorthMarq.  Many of Andover Station’s core tenants have been in the center since it opened 14 years ago, a strong signal to prospective investors,  “Andover Station’s high occupancy provides investors with consistent and durable cash flow,” said Maurer.   

Lakeville Retail Center is a fully leased neighborhood shopping center at Kenwood Trail and 175th Street West, near I-35 in Lakeville, Minnesota.  Tenants include Caribou Coffee, Subway and Park Dental in this 9,500 sf center.  Said Maurer, “Lakeville Retail Center’s size and leaseability are superior to competing centers, and combined with the existing tenant line-up, this center effectively out-positions all nearby unanchored strip centers.  This asset represents stable cash flow and a location in a well-established, yet growing retail area.”

Five Below Is Entering Minnesota Market

Five Below has signed its first lease in Minnesota, planning a new store in St. Cloud near Dick’s Sporting Goods to open later this year.  Ted Gonsior of Colliers is representing them here and is working on four additional  locations for 2016, with a potential of 25 to 30 stores over the next few years.  Five Below is a publicly held chain of stores based out of Philadelphia, with revenues of over $500m.  They sell products that cost consumers less than $5.00, with a target market of teens and pre-teens.  They currently have over 440 stores, with a prototype size of 9,000 sf.