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  • Courtesy drawing

    Renovations at the Pheasant Lane Mall in Nashua will begin in April. The mall will get new interior and exterior features including additional soft seating areas, restroom upgrades, redesigned entrances, landscaping, flooring and lighting as well as a new anchor store, Dick’s Sporting Goods, and two new restaurants, Burton’s Grill and Red Robin Gourmet Burgers.
  • Courtesy drawing

    This artist's rendering shows what the new food court will look like at Pheasant Lane Mall in Nashua after renovations are complete.
  • Courtesy drawing

    This artist's drawing shows a new entrance at the Pheasant Lane Mall in Nashua.
  • Courtesy drawing

    This artist's rendering shows the new food court entrance at the Pheasant Lane Mall in Nashua.
Friday, March 18, 2011

Renovations in store for Pheasant Lane Mall

NASHUA – Work on a $10 million, top-to-bottom renovation of the Pheasant Lane Mall will begin early next month, officials said at a news conference Thursday.

Executives from the Simon Property Group, which owns the mall along with more than 300 others throughout country, said the renovation project will take a year to complete.

Mall manager Vincent Cosco said work will be done at night and the mall will remain open during the project, which includes the addition of a new Dick’s Sporting Goods store.

Two new restaurants – Burton’s Grill and Red Robin Gourmet Burgers – will be added as well to the 1 million-square-foot mall, which opened in 1986, Cosco said.

Simon’s regional vice-president, Ron Hanson, said the company has been planning the renovations for five years in a dreary economy.

During that time, Simon has renovated other properties it owns, including the Burlington Mall and shopping centers on the north and south shores of Massachusetts.

The project in Nashua shows a corporate commitment by Simon to reinvest in its assets, Hanson said. The renovation has been planned to accommodate shoppers who want amenities such as a new family bathroom and comfortable seating throughout the facility, he said.

“This is a good time and important time to reinvest in our existing assets,” Hanson said.

The renovation project was first approved by the city in 2008, according to Gerald Prunier, a lawyer for Simon. After the economy fell apart in 2009, Simon requested that the approval be extended for a year, a request granted by the Planning Board. Then, in 2010, the plan was amended to show the new Dick’s store, Prunier said. The revised plan was approved by the board last summer, he said.

Mayor Donnalee Lozeau was at the news conference and said the mall renovation reinforces the importance of bringing commuter rail service to the city. Currently, the rail plan is in limbo in Concord, where state lawmakers have been bickering about it for years.

“That’s one of the things about bringing the train here. It will be good for the mall,’’ Lozeau said.

Cosco said the renovation includes a redesign of the food court where a new two-story, glass entrance will be built, along with new landscaping, lighting and furniture.

Overall, the project will focus on flooring, lighting, painting and the installation of new handrails on staircases at the massive facility, he said.

Tom West can be reached at news@nashuatelegraph.com.