New Development Set for Jonesboro's Caraway-Highland Intersection

by Graycen Colbert Bigger  on Wednesday, Dec. 6, 2017 2:43 pm   2 min read

Josh Brown (Graycen Colbert Bigger)

Haag Brown Commercial has announced another business coming to the Highland Drive-Caraway Road intersection in Jonesboro. 

Discount retailer Bargain Hunt will occupy 27,490 SF at the Highland Square Shopping Center beginning in the spring. The space formerly housed Kmart, which closed at the end of last year. 

The news follows a string of announcements for the intersection in the last year, including the transition of Hays Clothing in the old Coca-Cola property to technology company Tech Friends Inc., construction of a Smoothie King franchise, the closing of Sears and the long-awaited sale of the Indian Mall property.

Haag Brown is in final negotiations with two more tenants for the former Kmart location.

"Through the years, multiple national retailers, including Dick's Sporting Goods, have been interested in occupying the building, but the timing has never been right," said Josh Brown, principal broker at Haag Brown. "Bargain Hunt is the ideal tenant for this space and will attract other big-name users. We expect to announce another retailer in the coming months and have the entire Kmart space full in 2018."

The intersection has also seen the redevelopment of two business buildings.

Haag Brown and Colliers International Arkansas purchased the former Regions Bank Building, one of the largest office buildings in Jonesboro, in 2013. After renovating the 47,000-SF space, the developers renamed it the 2400 Building.

Tech Friends Inc. announced in December 2016 it would move into the former Hay's Clothing store in 2017. The local technology company, which specializes in hardware and software solutions for correctional facilities, expects to employ 200 people over the next few years.

Sears, the last original tenant in operation on the Indian Mall site, announced in January that it would not renew its lease in 2017, part of a plan to close 350 of its stores nationwide.

The mall, which closed in 2008, was demolished in March 2012. The 16-acre property, now known as Caraland Plaza, sold in August after years of being tied up in the bankruptcy proceedings of Highland Street Group LLC, a Memphis investment company. 

Haag Brown has already submitted plans to redevelop the existing 40,000 SF of retail space connecting Kroger Marketplace and the old Sears building. According to Brown, the group aims to redevelop the former Sears location, which includes 80,000 SF of usable retail space along with four retail/restaurant out-pads along the Caraway Road and Highland Drive intersection. A mixed-use development is in the works behind Kroger.

According to Brown, the consistent traffic patterns and high volume of shoppers at Kroger led the Haag Brown team to refocus development efforts to Highland Drive between Red Wolf Boulevard and Southwest Drive.

Jonesboro's population has grown more than 40 percent to 75,000 since 1990, while the city's consumer trade area is around 550,000. An estimated 44,000 cars travel through the intersection each day, which, according to the group's marketing materials, will be upgraded to accommodate seven lanes of traffic in the future. 

"We've handled about 30 projects on Red Wolf Boulevard between I-55 to the [Arkansas State University] campus in the last few years," Brown said. "It's pretty much fully developed. Highland Drive is now key to expansion in Jonesboro."

Haag Brown has offers pending on the outer parcels of the former Indian Mall property and expects to see construction of new restaurants within the next 12 months. The group believes the former Sears location will be leased within 18-24 months to a new retailer.  



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