CHARLOTTE — Tanger Outlets will bring 90 stores to a new center in southwest Charlotte.
The Greensboro-based company said the Queen City is an attractive market for growth. At the moment, the large tract of land in Southwest Charlotte, is so quiet the insects are all people can hear.
However in two years, that will change in a big way.
"I used to say this was the best kept secret. But I think the secret's gotten out on that," said said president of the Arrowood Business Association Charles Wilkerson.
Greensboro-based Tanger Outlets will build a 350,000 square foot, 90-store outlet mall on the site just off Steele Creek Road near Interstate 485.
“With the economy the way it's been, consumers are definitely looking for deals. I think people are willing to drive a little further even with the price of gas if you know you're going to have a savings,” said UNC Charlotte marketing professor Charles Bodkin.
Bodkin said the mall will be a big hit, even in a town with plenty of shopping options.
“It can become saturated, but adding Tanger Outlets isn't going to saturate the market. I think there's definitely demand in that market,” said Bodkin.
Business leaders say they hope the outlet center will yield not only a vibrant shopping community, but also with the restaurants and other stores that tend to pop up nearby.
"It gives Charlotte and the whole region an advantage to come to as a destination," said Wilkerson.
The outlet center could create as much as $10 million in tax revenue for Mecklenburg County each year. Bodkin believes a lot of that money won't come from locals, but rather from out of town and out-of-state consumers.
Tanger already operates outlets in Blowing Rock, Mebane and Nags Head. The company's competitor, Premium Outlets, operates a center in Gaffney, S.C., that's long been a popular shopping destination for Charlotte residents.