Charlotte Premium Outlets almost ready to open - | WBTV Charlotte

Charlotte region's largest outlet mall prepares to open


Charlotte is about to see the largest premium outlets in the region. The Charlotte Premium Outlets location is on schedule to open at the end of July. A behind-the-scenes look shows what retailers hope will be a winning formula.

"You have your stonework, your pillars, your lighting - everything is set for more of an upscale feel," said Holly Roberson, director of marketing and business development at Charlotte Premium Outlets.

The site has 400,000 square feet, 100 stores, 2,000 parking spaces, 3 fountains, a fireplace with nearby seating, and a media lounge with four televisions.

Developers hope the look and the feel of the Outlets will distinguish it from other malls in the area.

It has a circular design with five entry points.

"With the outdoor field, stonework, the architecture at the center - it's going to be really welcoming and warming for the shopper," said Roberson.

There are two outlets in the area - in Gaffney, where it's a village style with 75 stores; and in Smithfield at Carolina Premium Outlets. But the Charlotte Outlets, in the Steele Creek area, will be the largest one.

Mall managers believe the name brand stores and outlet prices will draw countless shoppers. That popularity is exactly what worries nearby residents.

"It's not going to be a place you want to live anymore," said Bill Harraman, who lives across the street from the Outlets. "It's just going to be too busy."

Harraman said he's dreading the traffic and the changes.

After 28 years of living in the same location, he and his wife have accepted the fact that they might have find a new home.

"Hopefully, eventually we can move and go somewhere where we don't have all that traffic," Harraman said.

But managers at the Charlotte Premium Outlets said "we're working with NC DOT and CMPD on getting off duty police officers in place to help with traffic light cycles, and traffic flow."

The Outlets - first of its kind in Charlotte - is expected to be a financial boost for the area.

A spokesperson for the Charlotte Premium Outlets told WBTV "the center is projected to generate over $140 million annually in retail sales. During construction, the development will create more than 400 construction jobs. Upon opening, the center will provide more than 900 permanent and part-time jobs."

According to the developers' estimates, the project is expected "to generate annual sales tax revenue of approximately $10 million."

Charlotte City officials said they didn't give the Outlet's owners and developers any incentives or tax breaks.

A spokesperson for the City said "there is an agreement to reimburse the project for a portion of the infrastructure.. and it's capped at approximately 6 million dollars over 10 years."

July 31st - the grand opening of Charlotte Premium Outlets - will be the start of shopping history in the Queen City.

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