Cooper To Open Outpatient Clinic At Moorestown Mall, PREIT Says

MOORESTOWN, NJ — The former Sears store at the Moorestown Mall will become a Cooper Hospital outpatient location, the mall owners announced this week.

“A transaction has been executed with Cooper Hospital for an outpatient location in the former Sears space at Moorestown Mall,” the Pennsylvania Real Estate Investment Trust (PREIT) said in announcing its full 2020 financial results and earnings for the first quarter of 2021.

“Cooper University Health Care, a leading academic health system in the southern New Jersey and Philadelphia region, will open a specialty care facility in the former Sears location at Moorestown Mall occupying over 165,000 square feet,” PREIT officials said in a statement. “With this addition and the apartments and hotel planned for the site, the property will further evolve its mix to create a one-stop hub, fulfilling community needs, including dining, entertainment a broad array of retail options, fitness facilities along with this premier healthcare facility.”

“I’m thrilled to see it,” Moorestown Mayor Nicole Gillespie said. “We’ve wanted it to be more of a mixed-use location, and not just retail. We’re very happy to have Cooper Health in our community.”

Sears announced it was closing its Moorestown Mall store last year, before the coronavirus pandemic became an issue for businesses throughout the state and the country. Read more here: Sears To Close Store At Moorestown Mall

The coronavirus pandemic hit PREIT hard. PREIT reported a net loss of $286.9 million for 2020. This was up from $38.2 million in 2019. It saw revenues of $261.8 million, down from $336.8 million the previous year.

The Moorestown Mall and other non-essential businesses shut down in March of last year, although restaurants were able to remain open for pickup and delivery.

The mall reopened June 29, but restaurants were permitted to reopen outside over the summer. Restaurants were allowed to reopen inside and the movie theater reopened in September.

“The PREIT team, and portfolio, proved to be resilient as we navigated uncertain terrain,” PREIT Chairman and CEO Joseph F. Coradino said. “Our targeted strategy of dispositions and anchor replacements over the past several years created a real estate portfolio of bullseye locations in high barrier-to-entry markets that stands the test of time. Our portfolio is comprised of a differentiated mix of uses that attracts robust demand from a variety of non-retail uses, strengthening the Company and fortifying our revenue stream. At the same time, we are well-positioned for a strong return to brick and mortar shopping and leisure as restrictions ease and vaccinations continue.”

PREIT also announced the following plans for leasing and redevelopment:

  • 358,000 square feet of leases are signed for future openings, which is expected to contribute annual gross rent of $8.4 million.
  • Leasing momentum continued with over 600,000 square feet of new stores opening in the portfolio during the year.
  • Construction is underway for Aldi to open its first store in the portfolio at Dartmouth Mall during Q3 2021.
  • A lease has been executed for a new self-storage facility in previously unused below grade space at Mall at Prince George’s with an anticipated opening in Q1 2022.
  • A lease with Tilt Studios was signed to replace JC Penney at Magnolia Mall in Florence, SC.

PREIT, which also owns malls in Cherry Hill and Cumberland, and has part ownership in the Gloucester Premium Outlets, didn’t provide a financial outlook for the upcoming year.