Rhode Island Mall to receive renovations

By Kirsten Glavin

kglavin@abc6.com

@kirstenglavin

The Rhode Island mall doesn't have much of a stellar reputation, after parts of the building shut down to customers.  There are currently only a few staple stores keeping the shopping area afloat.  But – that could soon change.

Plans have been filed for renovations, and up to 20 new retail stores are expected to open up.  According to Mayor Scott Avedisian, the goal is to make the Rhode Island mall stand out from its numerous competitors, like the Providence Place Mall and Wrentham outlets.

He says it's crucial the stores are unique and don't already exist in other shopping centers.

"I don't expect we're going to see every strip mall in Rhode Island's tenants just moving over there. I think you're going to see things that are new and different to the shopper," said Avedisian.

Some shoppers agree.

"I feel like a pet store would be really cool, it would draw attention," one shopper said.

The project should help boost the local economy by contracting out for renovations and providing a few hundred new retail jobs.

"Overall it adds to that whole notion of Route 2 and Warwick Rhode Island being the retail capital of southern New England," added Avedisian.

Renovations are scheduled to start next month.

(C) WLNE-TV 2015