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Patrick Henry mall has opened in downtown Washingtons second major development.
The mall, the former Woolworths site at 15th and F Streets NW, will be anchored by the newly opened Woolworth’s store at 1510 F Street NW.
The new Woolworth service center, the first of its kind in the country, is scheduled to open later this year.
The retail center is expected to create an additional 500 permanent jobs in the city, which has seen an average unemployment rate of 6.8 percent for the past six months, according to a recent analysis by the National Employment Law Project.
The mall is the latest of a string of downtowns new construction in recent months.
In January, the new retail complex at 14th and S streets NW opened.
In March, the mall was demolished and replaced with a hotel and restaurant, a new office building and a mixed-use development.
And in August, the Mall of America announced plans to build a $7.5 billion mixed-used complex on its land at 1515 N Street NW with more than 1,000 housing units, an indoor concert venue and retail shops.
A big part of the downtown redevelopment is a new downtown shopping district.
Downtown Washington is in the midst of the biggest urban redevelopment project in the region, with a $10 billion plan to build three hotels, a hotel hotel, a high-rise residential tower and retail space downtown.
The plan calls for an influx of thousands of new residents, with 1,400 apartments, offices and retail units.
A mix of businesses is planned for the area including a coffee shop, a boutique hotel, an art gallery and a jewelry store.
“This is the first large-scale redevelopment of downtown Washtenaw in decades,” said Ken Tumlin, a professor at George Washington University who specializes in urban revitalization.
“The economic impact will be tremendous.
The city will have a much larger population, and this will be a new anchor for that.”
The project will be financed through the state’s general fund and city’s redevelopment fund.
The state’s General Fund will make up nearly 70 percent of the cost.
The General Fund, the state Department of Transportation and local agencies will foot the rest.
The federal government will fund the remainder.
Mayor Mike McGinn and city councilwoman Sarah K. Smith said they are excited to welcome the development.
We are grateful to Mayor McGinn for his vision to bring jobs and affordable housing to the downtown community, Smith said in a statement.
“Patrick Henries is a catalyst for the downtown revitalization effort.
This new retail development will be the catalyst for that vision.”
Woolworths has long been a local landmark.
It opened in 1902 and later closed in 1992.
Its stores in downtown were once known as the Woolworth Building and its stores in Washingtontown were called the Wooltowns.
In 2010, Washingdons first African-American mayor, David A. Catania, appointed the Woolwys as one of the first black business leaders in the Washington area.
The Woolworth chain is the largest publicly traded U.S. department store chain, with more then 700 locations around the world.
Patrick Henry Mall is the second development in the area, and it’s expected to be the biggest.
It is being developed by developer Michael G. Soto Group.
Soto Group, which is backed by billionaire George Soros, has pledged $1 billion in new construction to help support the development of a downtown mall that has already received support from a $400 million tax-increment financing (TIF) bond package.