In the 1980s and 1990s it was the quintessential gathering place for young and old alike. In the 2000s it became a rundown eyesore and most recently, Gwinnett Place Mall was used as one of the sets for the Netflix series “Stranger Things.”
Today, Gwinnett County agreed to buy the struggling landmark in a deal that will close in 90 days.
The purchase is part of a strategic effort by Gwinnett’s government to create new opportunities for catalytic development in the area in partnership with the Gwinnett Place CID and local property owners. Once complete, management of the site will be transitioned to the county’s Urban Redevelopment Agency, which was activated by the Board in 2009 with a focus on “rehabilitation, conservation or redevelopment” of necessary areas within the county.
“This will be a tremendous asset for Gwinnett,” said Charlotte Nash, chairman of the Gwinnett County Board of Commissioners. “We’ve been working for a number of years to purchase this property that is central to our community’s geography and its recent history. There’s incredible opportunity here, and I believe that with careful planning and involvement from the community we can create a redevelopment that will be a place of pride for every Gwinnett resident.”
The price tag for the purchase is $23 million and includes 39 acres.
Completed in 1984, the Gwinnett Place Mall site encompasses more than 90 acres. The mall fell on difficult times in the mid-2000s as key tenants moved to regional malls, even as surrounding shopping centers continued to thrive.
The property not included within this sale will remain with respective current owners, whose current tenants – Macy’s, Mega Mart and Beauty Master – will not be impacted by this purchase. The redevelopment agency will work closely with these groups to ensure alignment on goals as planning and revitalization begins.
In recent years, the county has acquired other parcels in the area, totaling 10 acres, to develop a new transit center.
Additionally, these purchases will provide potential areas for stormwater management and other infrastructure needs associated with the potential redevelopment of the mall site.
County officials have not said how the Gwinnett Place space will be redeveloped.