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Streets at Southpoint Plans Neighborly Feel, Despite Neighbors' Resistance

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DURHAM — Southpoint mall owners say they want to be a good neighbor, and the proof is in the name they have chosen for their shopping center.

Developers say they have approval to name the mall the Streets at Southpoint. They say the street theme will give the mall a neighborhood look and feel.

Plans for the inside include two main corridors, named Main Street and Southpoint Street. Developers say they want patrons to feel like they are walking through a downtown neighborhood while they shop.

Opponents of the mall have been vocalfrom the beginning, and now some say the new concept is ironic because the complex will ruin real neighborhoods around the area.

Developer James Farrell says the mall is not trying to pretend it is something other than a shopping center. "We are a mall, and we're going to use the Streets at Southpoint as a way to graphically depict something unique for North Carolina and the city of Durham."

Developers say they have tried the neighborhood mall concept in Tampa and it was extremely popular, especially with tenants who are able to design their storefronts any way they like, instead of using the standard cookie-cutter approach.

There will be an official groundbreaking next Wednesday, but construction on the actual building will not begin until June.

The mall is scheduled to open in the fall of 2001.


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