By: Jenn Schanz
Wedged in between Lincoln and Omaha with a population just under five thousand, the city of Gretna's latest redevelopment project might make streets a little busier.
City Administrator Jeff Kooistra thinks so.
"I think the exciting part is to get the stores open and see a lot of traffic and people enjoying the activities there and then also to see some added value of new development happening in the area," he says.
After an old mall went into disrepair, developers joined with the city to draft a new plan for the lot.
Construction of the 300,000 square foot mall began this spring.
Kooistra says the innovative new shopping center will be more than just a place to buy clothes.
"The technology of the mall's going to be really exciting. I think it's going be an exciting shopping experience."
The mall, appropriately named Nebraska Crossing Smart Outlet, will have interactive signs, and mobile apps for shoppers to use.
Kooistra says it will be the country's most technologically advanced mall.
The outlet's layout will be state-of-the-art too.
"It's going to be much different than the ones I've seen in the past. It's not a strip center," Kooistra says.
With nine separate buildings connected by wide walkways, the outlet is more of an outdoor market than a traditional mall.
In addition to bringing in more the 500 jobs, the city anticipates an increase in traffic, and will build an extra road and turn about to help with the flow.
Construction is on schedule for a grand opening around Thanksgiving, just in time for Black Friday.