Coral Ridge Mall
Coral Ridge Mall is an enclosed super-regional shopping mall located just south of Interstate 80 in Coralville, Iowa. The mall's primary trade area includes Iowa City, Cedar Rapids, and other parts of eastern Iowa. It is managed by General Growth Properties. The mall has a total floor area of 1,187,097 square feet (110,285 m 2), with a gross leasable area of 979,415 square feet (90,991 m 2). It also features a 1,000-seat food court with Wi-Fi internet access, a 10-screen movie theater complex, a large "antique" carousel, a children's play area, the Iowa Children's Museum, and an NHL regulation-sized ice rink. While the ice rink is primarily used for public skating, the University of Iowa Hawkeyes hockey team plays most of its home games there. Coral Ridge Mall's anchor stores are Sears, Dillard's, JCPenney, Younkers, Target, and Best Buy, which is attached to Target but not accessible from the rest of the mall. Other major tenants include Barnes & Noble, Old Navy, and Scheels All Sports.

Coral Ridge Mall opened on July 29, 1998, with 100% of its floor space leased. It attracted one million visitors in its first 30 days and continues to attract roughly 10 million visitors a year. It also spawned additional retail development at the interchange of I-80 and Iowa Highway 965, now known as Coral Ridge Avenue. Big-box stores such as Kohl's, Lowe's, Dress Barn, Gordmans, and a Wal-Mart SuperCenter have opened in the years following Coral Ridge's opening. On September 3, 2003, during routine structural checks, officials discovered someone had been secretly growing marijuana near the mall's ceiling. No plants themselves were found but growing lights, gardening pots, and seeds were found in the roof space above one of the tenants. The amount of marijuana that had been grown could not be determined. The perpetrator faced an additional five years to their prison sentence due to the proximity of the Iowa Children's Museum in Coral Ridge Mall.

Economic impact
When Coral Ridge Mall was planned, Iowa City business owners were concerned that the mall would take business away from them. While taxable sales in Coralville increased from $171.2 million in 1998 to $314.6 million in 1999, sales in Iowa City increased from $701.1 million to $733.3 million in that same period. By 2006 taxable sales in Coralville would grow to $549.7 million while sales in Iowa City grew to $901.4 million. However, a 2000 report by Iowa State University economics professor Kenneth Stone stated that 18 eastern Iowa counties lost over $120 million in retail sales to Johnson County in Coral Ridge's first year. In addition, despite the overall increase in taxable sales, general merchandise and apparel sales in Iowa City declined between 1997 and 2007. Several malls in eastern Iowa, including Old Capitol Mall in downtown Iowa City and Westdale Mall in Cedar Rapids, saw an increased number of store closings after Coral Ridge Mall opened. Most of Coral Ridge Mall's anchors, except for Younkers and Dillard's, relocated from other shopping centers in the Iowa City area; Younkers ran two stores in Johnson County before closing its Old Capitol Mall store in January 2005. By 2008, Old Capitol Mall and Sycamore Mall in Iowa City would rebound to 95 percent occupancy under local ownership while downtown Iowa City merchants began to focus on specialty retail. Coral Ridge Mall was built in a tax increment financing district. The Des Moines Register reported on August 13, 2006, that the city of Coralville was using the $7 million in property taxes generated by the mall to pay off long-term debts on a new hotel and convention center instead of using it for local services.


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