Rosedale could become Roseville’s newest neighborhood.
Representatives for the popular east metro mall are shopping around a “village” concept that would transform the vacant Herberger’s department store into housing, green space and more.
Rosedale managers were tight-lipped Wednesday about the plan. But an online marketing brochure paints a dramatic picture: Upscale apartments on a tree-lined boulevard, a small park with a walking path, grocery store, boutique hotel and even outdoor artwork.
“We are investigating. We know there is demand,” said Lisa Crain, vice president and general manager of Rosedale Center.
In a statement, Crain said that mall officials were “working on plans for further development, and at this time, those plans are not complete or ready for distribution publicly.” The online brochure, she said, “is a standard marketing piece that Rosedale uses to gauge retailer interest in potential projects.”
She added that “when we have something ready to share publicly, we will be happy to revisit.” The plan was first reported by the Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal.
Other shopping malls in the Twin Cities and across the country have added hotels and nearby apartments in recent years as the rise of online shopping has forced brick-and-mortar retailers to innovate.
Roseville city leaders said they are intrigued by the idea. In fact, city officials may have helped nurture it two years ago when they expanded commercial zoning at the mall to include multifamily housing, said Roseville Mayor Dan Roe.
“There is no question that the regional retail hub we have in our city is a major economic engine for this area,” Roe said. “We want them to be successful and are encouraged when we see this kind of investment.”
Built in 1969 when indoor shopping malls were still a fairly new concept, Rosedale now has more than 1 million square feet of retail space and draws 14 million visitors a year.
In just the last year, the mall has unveiled a series of new attractions and shops to fill vacant storefronts and draw new visitors. “We provide an experience — something you can’t find online,” Crain said.
Rosedale opened its new Revolution Hall dining center in November. It includes nearly a dozen types of cuisine and two full bars.
Von Maur, the Iowa-based department store chain, opened its second Twin Cities store at Rosedale in late 2018.
Rose & Loon, a 4,000-square-foot boutique that sells items crafted by a curated group of regional artists, opened its doors last fall. And SeaQuest, an Idaho chain of aquariums, will cut the ribbon on a 23,000-square-foot attraction at Rosedale later this spring. It will feature birds, reptiles and sea life.
“They have tried to stay on the cutting edge, and it works for them and it works for the city of Roseville,” said Garry Bowman, Roseville’s communications manager. “They have bucked the trend of other malls. They have been able to thrive. We want to see that continue.”