Indian Mall Possibly Sold

JONESBORO, AR -- The Indian Mall in Jonesboro could be getting a makeover in the future. It's up for grabs and there's a possible taker. The property was listed for sale by the Warmack family for 15 million dollars. They've owned the property for more than 40 years, now Bruce Burrow and MBC holdings who developed the new Mall at Turtle Creek say they want to buy it.

"Our idea would be to bring 3 or 4 major tenants to the site. It will be about a 50 million dollar plus project. If we're successful with the design and attracting those tenants, probably will bring about 700 to 800 new jobs, plus the construction jobs," says Burrow, President of MBC Holdings.

Burrow feels the re-development of the mall will also generate about 70 million dollars a year in retail sales, money that's obviously not flowing through these doors as it stands today.

"Subject to our ability to work with the existing sears location, we would level the entire project and come back with a new lifestyle, open-air, heavy landscaped, state of the art, really attractive, great center," says Burrow.

But the green light for the project is still pending. Burrow says they are currently in a 60 day period to review and study the property, but also to make sure the city is on board before they sign to buy the property.

"My major concern is what happened to us at Kohl's. This is not our first rodeo as they say. We've done projects here in this city for 40 years," says Burrow.

He's referring to a problem with the final stages of development of the Kohl's site, a problem with drainage, which he blames the city for costing him 400 thousand dollars.

"I took a strong offense at somebody blackmailing us in regards to the certificate of occupancy and I'm sorry but that's exactly what it was and we will not be in that position. We will not develop in this community again if we don't have a resolution to those issues prior to our starting," says Burrow.

We met up with Mayor Formon to get his thoughts on Burrow's concerns with his administration.

"There were some issues with the certificate of occupancy with Kohl's and we got those all worked out as quickly as we possibly could. There were some disagreements with us, with Mr. Burrow and also with F.E.M.A., but all those got worked out and it opened up in a timely fashion," says Jonesboro Mayor Doug Formon.

Formon feels problems in the past with burrow are just that, in the past. He adds any project that will bring 700 jobs to Jonesboro has the city's total support.

"There's definitely a willingness from us to work with Mr. Burrow and we obviously want to see the Indian Mall turn into something nice. It's kind of a void there in the middle of Jonesboro now," adds Mayor Formon.

Burrow says in the 60 day period he plans to meet with the city to get their support and an agreement that they will not withhold a certificate of occupancy permit in the future.