Sycamore Mall in Iowa City is getting a facelift and a new identity -- Iowa City Marketplace.
Shive-Hattery Architecture-Engineering on Tuesday said it is working with CORE Realty Holdings of California to rebrand the shopping center, which has lost other tenants, including Von Maur to Iowa River Landing.
Mark Seabold, a Shive-Hattery architect, said the main concept for Iowa City Marketplace removes leased space to provide interior and exterior areas for social interaction, including a new exterior plaza at the former main entrance.
"This is a great opportunity to incorporate new national trends in the commercial market into Iowa City and Sycamore Mall is proving to be a great place to start," Seabold said. "The mall has seen its share of vacancies in recent months, but this rebranding will open the area up to greater possibilities."
Seabold said similar types of reuses are occurring nationwide, turning existing structure into social space by bringing together dining, entertainment and mixed use areas. The hope is to create a free flowing environment that engages visitors in a meaningful way.
Seabold said negotiations are underway with potential tenants that share in the same ideals.
"By researching many different tenant concepts from schools to grocery to fabrication studios, the thought is to create a variety of reasons to visit the Iowa City Marketplace and provide something very different from the other retail experiences in the local area," Seabold said.