NewPark Mall in Newark, CA: From 1980 to Now

Opening and Early Years

NewPark Mall opened in August 1980 in Newark, California. Macy’s and Homart Development developed the mall. It had two anchor stores: Macy’s and Sears. The mall’s location in the Tri-City area (Fremont, Newark, and Union City) positioned it as a key shopping destination.

In the early years, NewPark Mall attracted numerous retailers. The variety of stores drew in shoppers from nearby cities. The mall’s design included two levels of retail space, accommodating a wide range of stores and services.

The 1980s saw a steady influx of popular retail chains, and the mall expanded its offerings to meet consumer demand. Many visitors considered it a prime location for things to do near Fremont, California.

Expansions in the 1980s and 1990s

In 1985, NewPark Mall expanded by adding Mervyns, which relocated from the Fremont Hub. This move brought more shoppers and increased the mall’s appeal.

The expansion didn’t stop there. In 1989, Emporium-Capwell opened a store, moving from its previous location near Washington Hospital.

JCPenney joined the lineup in 1991. This new store provided more shopping options for visitors. The mall’s management kept adapting to changing retail trends and consumer demands.

In 1996, the Emporium store closed, and Target took its place. This change marked a shift towards more variety in the types of stores at the mall.

These expansions in the 1980s and 1990s brought well-known retail names to NewPark Mall, helping solidify its position as a major shopping destination in the Tri-City area.

The mall continued to grow and evolve, responding to the needs and preferences of its visitors.

The 2000s Changes and Challenges

In the 2000s, NewPark Mall saw several changes. In 2000, Old Navy moved from the Fremont Hub to the mall.

However, it closed in 2005, and Steve & Barry’s took over the space in 2007. This period showed how retail trends can shift quickly.

Mervyns closed its doors in 2007. Burlington Coat Factory replaced it in 2010, bringing a new type of store to the mall. These changes reflected the mall’s ability to adapt to the retail landscape.

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In 2012, Target relocated to the Pacific Commons Shopping Center in Fremont, leaving a gap that the mall needed to fill.

Sears announced its closure in 2018 as part of a plan to shut down 78 stores nationwide, affecting the mall’s anchor store lineup.

The 2000s presented challenges and opportunities for NewPark Mall, demonstrating how it navigated the changing retail environment.

The mall’s management continually worked to bring in new stores and keep the shopping experience fresh for visitors.

Renovations and New Additions

NewPark Mall underwent extensive renovations that wrapped up in early 2017. These upgrades gave the mall a fresh look and new attractions.

A key addition was the 12-screen AMC movie complex, which includes an IMAX screen. This theater became a popular spot for moviegoers in the area.

The mall also introduced a new restaurant area. This space features a glass-walled design, offering views across the entire property. The new dining options attracted more visitors, providing a variety of places to eat.

Two pizza restaurants were launched in 2017 as part of the renovation efforts. These new dining spots added to the mall’s appeal, giving shoppers more choices for food.

The renovation aimed to modernize the mall and enhance the shopping experience.

Major Store Closures

In recent years, NewPark Mall has faced the challenge of major store closures. Target, which replaced Emporium in 1996, relocated to Pacific Commons in Fremont in 2012, leaving a large space to fill within the mall.

Sears, one of the original anchor stores, closed in September 2018. This was part of a nationwide plan to shut down 78 Sears stores. The closure marked the end of an era for the mall and left another large vacancy.

In April 2019, JCPenney shut down as part of a strategy to close 27 underperforming stores. Burlington Coat Factory, which had taken over the former Mervyns space, moved to Pacific Commons in 2020. These closures had a big impact on the mall’s anchor lineup.

Despite these challenges, NewPark Mall works to adapt and bring in new tenants. The management focuses on finding replacements and keeping the mall active.

The closures reflected broader trends in the retail industry, but the mall continues to seek new opportunities.

Recent Developments

In July 2021, the Newark City Council and Brookfield Properties sanctioned new plans for NewPark Mall.

These plans involved constructing a 319-unit apartment complex on the mall’s grounds. This move aimed to attract more residents and create a more vibrant community.

A new Costco was planned for the southeast side of the mall, where the old JCPenney and Burlington Coat Factory once stood.

The Costco store opened its doors on November 18, 2023. This addition brought a new wave of shoppers to the mall, boosting its overall foot traffic.

The recent developments reflect a shift towards mixed-use spaces. By integrating residential units and retail, the mall adapted to changing consumer habits.

The addition of Costco provided a new anchor, replacing some of the large stores that had closed.

These changes highlight the mall’s strategy to stay relevant. The combination of new housing and retail options aimed to create a more dynamic environment.

NewPark Mall Community Engagement

NewPark Mall plays an active role in the community. The mall’s proximity to the Newark campus of Ohlone College and Newark Memorial High School links it closely with educational institutions.

These nearby schools mean that students and faculty frequently visit the mall for shopping and dining.

The Agricultural Institute of Marin nonprofit runs a farmers market on the mall’s property every Sunday. This market attracts local residents and offers fresh produce and goods.

The farmers market adds a unique element to the mall. It provides an opportunity for local vendors to sell their products. This weekly event draws a different crowd than the typical retail shoppers, fostering a sense of community.

NewPark Mall‘s involvement in local activities strengthens its ties to the area. By hosting events like the farmers market, the mall supports local businesses and provides a space for community gatherings. This engagement helps keep the mall integrated with the local lifestyle.

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