Mall at Turtle Creek Workers Make Progress, Despite Weather

January 12, 2005 – Posted at 5:02 p.m.

JONESBORO -- When Jonesboro's new mall is completed, a familiar retailer will be missing. If you've driven past the Mall at Turtle Creek you know that things are really starting to take shape. Those mounds of dirt have been smoothed out and it looks like building could begin soon.

The wet weather has hampered construction at the mall site but windy conditions are helping to dry the ground. Even though it has been very muddy, work continues to make progress. Jonesboro has seen an extremely wet fall and winter.

"We need wind and sunshine and we've seen very little of that," said Jimmy Morgan, project supervisor.

But they're still getting a lot of work done.

"Days we can work we've had to double-time it in order to keep the project on schedule," said Morgan.

That means the workers are putting in seven days a week and overnights, what ever it takes to keep the dirt moving.

"I've got several people out here who have worked 18 - 20 hours straight and they're trying every one of them," said Morgan.

Those are just the type of words Turtle Creek Mall developer Bruce Burrows likes to hear, and the type of work he likes to see as he monitors his mall from his office balcony.

"See how the trucks are moving now," said Morgan as he pointed across the field.

They look like Tonka trucks from his office balcony, that's where the telescope comes in handy. And there's one Jonesboro favorite that Mr. Burrows is not eyeing through that lens... Sears.

"Sears is not a part of the project," said Morgan.

In fact you won't find a Sears anywhere joining any new projects.... the national chain is doing it's own thing now.

Store manager Jeanie Pechilis says they are in the process of finding a new location where they're going to build a new store with a new name called Sears Grand. The store will be much bigger and will feature new products and services.

Mr. Burrows says that he can't release that info right now because most of those companies are publicly headed and they have to alert their shareholders groups first. New restaurants are expected to open around September of this year along with JC Penny and Target. The rest of the mall is still slated to open 2006.