One of Trolley Square mall's main tenants, Restoration Hardware, is headed to City Creek Center, the new downtown Salt Lake City shopping center opening next month less than two miles away.
Restoration Hardware officials didn't immediately respond to inquiries about the new store or its existing one at Trolley. But operating two Restoration Hardware locations which sell pricey furniture, linens and accessories for the home within such close proximity would be highly unlikely.
"We do know they are opening at City Creek, but we don't have any confirmation on the timing or closing of the location at Trolley," said Dawn Katter, Trolley general manager.
So far, the effects on Trolley of City Creek Center's aggressive leasing efforts to fill 800,000 square feet of space may be limited to the loss of Restoration Hardware. Trolley's other main tenants, including natural-foods grocer Whole Foods, which opened early last year, are locked into long-term leases.
Trolley also is anchored by Pottery Barn, Pottery Barn Kids and Williams-Sonoma. Pottery Barn doubled in size at Trolley in 2009, and Williams-Sonoma expanded in the mall in 2008.
By comparison, The Gateway shopping center in downtown Salt Lake City has lost several tenants in recent weeks, including children's clothier Gymboree and apparel retailers Lane Bryant, American Eagle and Express, some of which appear headed to City Creek Center.
City Creek Center, between Salt Lake's State Street and West Temple and 100 South and South Temple, will be an upscale shopping center owned and operated by Taubman Centers Inc. It's nestled amid the larger City Creek project owned and managed by the development arm of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints that includes offices, condominiums and apartments.
In September, Taubman released a list of more than two dozen tenants, including Tiffany & Co., planning to open in the mall, which will have about 80 stores and restaurants, led by retailers Macy's and Nordstrom.
Taubman officials have said they won't be releasing the full lineup of tenants until closer to opening day, March 22.
Many retailers and restaurants could justify locations in both City Creek Center and other malls such as Fashion Place in Murray because they are miles apart. Trolley Square and The Gateway would appear to be too close to City Creek for the same to be true.
Although no mall wants to see tenants leave, Eric Moldenhauer, general manager of Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory, said he doesn't believe losing Restoration Hardware, which is in its own building outside the main Trolley mall, would have a huge effect on other merchants. Whole Foods creates a lot of cross-shopping opportunities, but the same can't be said for Restoration, he added.
"To me, it wouldn't be as big of an effect as you might think."