Work crews have been hammering away, restoring the wood-and-bronze-accented central hall of the former Strawbridge & Clothier store downstairs at 801 Market St. from our Inquirer offices.
Rumors that Bloomingdale’s or another high-end department store will take the space have been current in the neighborhood. Earlier plans and speculation had centered on a casino, a Target, or high-end restaurants.
Of course, Bloomingdale’s owner, Macy’s Inc., hasn’t announced a new Philly store. Erin Halley, spokeswoman for Pennsylvania Real Estate Investment Trust (PREIT), told me there’s nothing to announce.
But retail-watchers say PREIT, which didn’t upgrade the Gallery complex when it improved its malls in Cherry Hill, Plymouth Meeting, and other suburbs in the late 2000s, finally looks ready to make a Center City move – especially since it agreed to pay $60 million to buy the last section it didn’t already own from Vornado Realty Trust last fall.
Read more at http://www.philly.com/philly/business/20130712_Is_a_high-end_retailer_in_Gallery_s_near_future_.html#H0ISG0TbHQrRt3SG.99