Ground broken on new outlet center in East Hartford - WFSB 3 Connecticut

Ground broken on new outlet center in East Hartford

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Lawmakers and city officials were on hand for the ground-breaking ceremony. (WFSB) Lawmakers and city officials were on hand for the ground-breaking ceremony. (WFSB)
Here is a rendering of the Outlet Shoppes at Rentschler Field. (Town of East Hartford) Here is a rendering of the Outlet Shoppes at Rentschler Field. (Town of East Hartford)
There will be about 70 leading fashion and lifestyle retailers at the Outlet Shoppes at Rentschler Field. (Horizon Group Properties, Inc.) There will be about 70 leading fashion and lifestyle retailers at the Outlet Shoppes at Rentschler Field. (Horizon Group Properties, Inc.)
The Outlet Shoppes at Rentschler Field will "sit-down restaurants, a food pavilion, and several quick-eats shops, as well as a central courtyard with an outdoor fireplace and an engaging children’s play area." (Horizon Group Properties, Inc.) The Outlet Shoppes at Rentschler Field will "sit-down restaurants, a food pavilion, and several quick-eats shops, as well as a central courtyard with an outdoor fireplace and an engaging children’s play area." (Horizon Group Properties, Inc.)
EAST HARTFORD, CT (WFSB) -

A groundbreaking ceremony for a new outdoor shopping center in East Hartford was held on Thursday morning.

The Outlet Shoppes at Rentschler Field will house about 70 leading fashion and lifestyle retailers on 282,000 square feet of leasable space, according to developer Horizon Group Properties, Inc.

The company said the "will serve as a compelling tourism magnet and strong economic driver." Horizon Group Properties, Inc said it is expected to generate an estimated $223 million in state taxes over the next 20 years and create thousands of jobs

“This project will create a significant number of both permanent and construction jobs and we look forward to the many new amenities it will provide," East Hartford Mayor Marcia A. Leclerc said in a statement on Thursday. 

Leclerc said it will be an economic engine for metro Hartford.

"One of the most important things, we talked about is the jobs," Leclerc said. "There are 1,200 jobs in construction and 1,300 permanent jobs." 

The shops are scheduled to open in about a year.  Thursday's groundbreaking will kick off the first phase of construction.

"This project has been almost four years in the making, so it’s incredibly rewarding to finally see it come to fruition," Horizon Group Properties President and CEO Gary Skoien said in a statement on Thursday. 

While the list of potential tenants is under wraps, the Outlet Shoppes at Rentschler Field will feature the following items:  

  • sit-down restaurants
  • food pavilion
  • several quick-eats shops
  • central courtyard with an outdoor fireplace
  • children’s play area

Horizon Group Properties said the shops will be easily accessible from both Interstates 84 and 91. Organizers of the project promise it will be come a destination for people all over. 

"It is going to spread like wildfire through the state," Connecticut Department of Labor Commissioner Scott Jackson said. 

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