MONROE — Pat Catan’s Craft Center will move later this year from its longtime home on Dixie Highway to become an anchor store at the Mall of Monroe.
“We thought that end of town was a little more active. We like the fact that Target’s there. We just thought it would be a better sales spot for us,” said Craig Catanzarite, the company’s director of real estate and development.
The new store will cover 51,000 square feet, about the same size as the current store. An opening date for the new store hasn’t been set, but Mr. Catanzarite said it’s likely to be between Aug. 1 and Sept. 1.
The location that Pat Catan’s will renovate was once home to J.C. Penney and more recently clothing retailer Steve and Barry’s. For the last year, the Youngstown-based Cafaro Co., which owns the Mall of Monroe, has been operating the large space as an expo center as developers worked to find a new long-term tenant.
Spokesman Joe Bell said Cafaro is happy to have Pat Catan’s.
“Pat Catan’s is a very good outfit. They’re a wonderful company that’s kind of a leader in crafting supplies, and we have a good relationship with them,” he said. “They saw some real opportunity in becoming an anchor store at the Mall of Monroe.”
Based in the Cleveland suburb of Strongsville, family-owned Pat Catan’s operates 27 stores in Indiana, Michigan, Ohio, and Pennsylvania.
While craft stores aren’t prototypical anchor stores, Mr. Bell said they are becoming important parts of many shopping centers. He also said shopping centers are thinking differently about how anchor stores are defined.
“The American mall has evolved and we’re seeing a wide variety of different stores being recognized as anchors,” he said. “We have stores that are primarily cater toward outdoors people and sporting goods fanatics ... it’s no longer just your traditional department store heavy on apparel that can be an anchor.”
Mr. Bell said the Mall of Monroe’s occupancy rate is in the 80th percentile. Planet Fitness opened in mid-April and and a tenant called Luxe Nails & Spa will open soon.