Shopping Center Business

AUG 2018

Shopping Center Business is the leading monthly business magazine for the retail real estate industry.

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BUTLER PLAZA 46 • SHOPPING CENTER BUSINESS • August 2018 national brands such as Mud Pie and Simply Southern, will insure the unique character and market-tailored merchandising we're striving for," says Mary Reichardt, corporate director of marketing for Butler Enterprises. "'Community Platform' is the final phase of Butler Town Center's experien- tial formula," says Butler. "It's what I've learned over the years is the 'x factor,' so from initial design to final execution we have planned an ar- chitectural scale com- bined with the history of the area that creates a sense of place, com- plimented by a series of people-engaging amenities coupled with an active com- munity events area." Amenities of the project include a se- ries of six strategical- ly placed fountains drawing customers down its Main Street, culminating at the feature "Cloud Foun- tain," fronting Sten- gel Field Food Hall topped by one of two luxury residential buildings. Ranked as a tier-one research institution, The Uni- versity of Florida sets the tone and expec- tation in Gainesville. Butler Town Center's innovative "Cloud Fountain" meets that expectation though technology that creates varying levels of mist culminating in a dense fog upon which moving imagery and videos can be projected, providing unending creative opportunities for seasonal and art-sup- porting imagery and videos. Involving community groups in ac- tivities and installations is planned as a regular part of the community platform for Butler Town Center. In the first such undertaking, local Gainesville artist Linda Zidonik has completed the design and work for the mosaic tiles of Fountain #1 — a produce themed piece adjacent to the outdoor patio of Whole Foods. The land where Butler Town Cen- ter was built was formerly Stengel Field, an airstrip and flight training facility active in the 1940s. It is the birthplace of the oldest surviving Pitt's Special airplane which hangs in the Smithsonian's National Air and Space Companion Museum — the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center in Washington D.C. Its twin, purchased by Butler in 2017, will be displayed on the prop- erty hanging at the entrance to Stengel Field Food Hall. "We've come full circle," says But- ler. "My father began our retail jour- ney with a roadside produce market in the late 1930s — the first of its kind open seven days a week and offering curbside service — the customer ser- vice level we see our grocers striving for today. We brought the first major big-box center to Gainesville in 1975 with Publix Super Market as the first store to open in Butler Plaza, added over 100 new-to-market concepts through the years, such as the second Texas Roadhouse in the chain and the area's first Trader Joe's in 2012. Then, we brought even more new retail and restaurants when we opened Butler North in 2016. Butler Town Center may be our latest venture, but who knows what's next? Retail real estate is truly an evolutionary process." SCB Amenities of the project include a series of six strategically placed fountains drawing customers down its Main Street, culminating at the feature "Cloud Fountain," fronting Stengel Field Food Hall topped by one of two luxury residential buildings.

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