ST. PETERSBURG — The Sears department store at Tyrone Square Mall, which has been open for nearly 50 years, could be closing to make room for a Dick's Sporting Goods and Lucky's Market.
Seritage Growth Properties, a New York based real estate developer, has submitted plans to the city of St. Petersburg to demolish the 188,515-square-foot Sears store to make way for a new 151,952-square-foot shopping center, according to building permits filed in St. Petersburg. Leases have already been signed with Dick's Sporting Goods, Lucky's Market and Petsmart, with room for one more anchoring retailer.
Organic grocery chain Lucky's Market has been scouting sites in the Tampa Bay area for months. This could be the first store to open in the region. Lucky's has stores in Naples, Orlando and South Florida.
The new shopping center, if approved by the city, will be on the 22nd Avenue side of the mall with store entrances facing N Tyrone Boulevard.
There will be a 8,500-square-foot building that will connect the Dick's store to the rest of Tyrone Square Mall. The other stores won't be connected to the mall, according to documents filed with the city. Some out parcel development could include new restaurants, like a Chili's and Longhorn Steakhouse, and a series of small retail shops.
The Sears department store was sold to Seritage in July 2015. Employees at the Sears store said it was unclear when the store would close and it was contingent on the city's approval of the redevelopment plans. The Sears store opened in St. Petersburg in 1968, before the mall technically opened in 1972.
"The Sears store, including the Sears Auto Center, at Tyrone Square were recently sold to Seritage Growth as part of an agreement in which Sears Holdings leases the store from Seritage," said Howard Riefs, spokesman for Sears. "Under this agreement, Seritage contractually has the right to recapture all of the space occupied by the Sears store and all the space occupied by the Sears Auto Center. To date, we have not received notice from Seritage that they will be exercising that right."
Riefs said the store will remain open for the time being.
Seritage Growth Properties owns and develops commercial real estate across the country, including the Sears store at Westfield Countryside, which converted half of its space into a Whole Foods Market in 2014.
Tyrone Square Mall is operated by Simon Property Group and is anchored by Dillard's, Macy's and JC Penney. A 10-screen Cobb Luxury Theatre opened there earlier this year. A Lee Roy Selmon's restaurant closed there in February.
News researcher Caryn Baird contributed to this report. Contact Justine Griffin at email@example.com or (727) 893-8467. Follow @SunBizGriffin.