Redevelopment of the 40-year-old SouthPark Mall in Moline will begin April 24 with an event to mark the beginning of demolition of the food court and former Sears department store.

The mall owner, Macerich Co., plans to demolish about 250,000 square feet of the 1 million-square-foot complex.

Redevelopment to the mall's exterior will include new entrances, landscaping and directional monument signage. Updates to the interior include upgrading restrooms, enhancing the ambient lighting, new carpet, painting and enlarging the common area with amenities, such as soft seating and new Wi-Fi capabilities. New wayfinding signs also are part of the planned changes.

Kathy Jurgens, property manager for SouthPark, said the April 24 event, which begins at 4 p.m., "focuses on a huge milestone in the revelopment process."

Phase I will continue until November. While the mall is under redevelopment, interior and exterior shops, including Gordman's, Office Max and anchor stores JCPenney, Dillard's, Younkers and Von Maur will be open. 

Phase II incorporates an on/off ramp with access to John Deere Expressway.

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The Moline City Council approved an agreement to allow Macerich  to renovate SouthPark. Under the agreement, the council approved a performance-based development agreement with Macerich that will include demolition; rehabilitation of portions of the mall facade; improvements, including streets and public utilities; installation of new mall signage and lighting; parking lot resurfacing and restriping; and landscaping.

The council previously established the SouthPark Mall Tax Increment Financing, or TIF, district. Under the agreement, as the property value increases, the city will use portions of its increased tax revenues to reimburse Macerich for demolition, road access and other renovation costs. In the meantime, Macerich will pay all costs of the project upfront.