Construction for new locations for two existing Deerbrook shops continues while a major tenant, Jewel, continues to consider its future in the Deerfield shopping center more than five months after a decision was promised.
Workers were busy today erecting buildings adjacent to Chase Bank which will house Starbucks and Subway. Those two businesses will move out of their inline space and into free standing structures as soon as they are ready. Starbucks will have a drive through window.
The overall future of Deerbrook remains uncertain while Jewel’s new ownership determines what it wants to do with its existing store. In May, shopping center management told Mayor Harriet Rosenthal a decision on Jewel’s future will be forthcoming in 90 days. There is still no answer.
“Part of the delay is the sale of Jewel,” Rosenthal said. There have been recent meetings between Village officials and representatives of the shopping center. “Our hope is that what will be right for them will be right for Deerbrook.”
A plan disclosed by a source familiar with the shopping center almost two years ago called for Starbucks and Subway to be relocated to free standing buildings. Ownership has gone ahead with that.
The larger part of the project involved eliminating the mall structure and giving all merchants an outside entrance. T.J. Maxx would move into the Jewel location and the grocery store would take the spot formerly occupied by Best Buy. A new, up to date supermarket would be created there.
Until Jewel makes up its mind on what it wants to do, that plan will not be moving forward, according to Rosenthal. “We have another meeting next month and we hope to get some answers,” she said.
Another part of the Deerbrook puzzle is the space formerly occupied by Wonder! The former children’s store subleased its space from Sears, which operated The Great Indoors there and continues to pay rent. “They (Sears) have a right of first refusal,” Rosenthal said meaning Sears can veto a new tenant and continue to make its payments.