Last year's removal of the Sears location at Orlando Fashion Square was the first step toward installing a 60,000-square-foot Floor & Decor location and a more than 40,000-square-foot Orchard Supply Hardware store as mall anchors. The demolition was followed up by the leveling of the Sears Auto Center, which left even more space for additional tenants.
Fast foreward about 10 months: The post-demolition debris field is now replaced by a brand new building measuring more than 110,000 square feet as heavy machinery moves earth for parking lot renovations and infrastructure improvements. Meanwhile, a new 17,127-square-foot parcel, to be erected on the former site of the Sears Auto Center, will house an Olive Garden and LongHorn Steakhouse. See the photo gallery for a look at how things are shaping up.
New tenants will add jobs, as well as broaden the retail and restaurant choices for the neighboring Baldwin Park community and downtown Orlando.
The new construction may just be the beginning of major changes for the property as DeBartolo Development Co. — the company behind the $100 million Mills Park mixed-use project — is under contract to buy the 44-year-old Orlando Fashion Square mall. The sale and new high-profile tenants are a positive turn for the long-struggling mall, which has changed hands four times since 2004 and, according to Orange County records, has an assessed value of nearly $41 million.