By Erwin Mascarinas
SM Prime Holdings, Inc. is now planning to open it’s new mall in Butuan City on November this year, bringing more development in the future, an official said Thursday.
“Our target is to open the mall to the public on November 29, 2019 with its blessing to take place on the 28th,” said SMPHI vice president for operations Mindanao Regions Oliver John R. Tiu, adding that to boost the economic growth in Caraga region.
Tiu said the mall will have the total floor area of around 37,000 square meters, about 3 ½ story high with two major floors and then the other half would be the cinema, cyberzone with an arcade.
Tiu said the mall will be the 7th SM mall in Mindanao.
“Currently we have five SM malls in Mindanao, the 6th mall SM Minpro will open on October 18, 2019 in Zamboanga City, a month ahead of the opening of Butuan’s mall,” he said.
According to SMPHI, the Minpro Citimall in Zamboanga City, is a 22-year-old mall that closed on September 30, 2018 to facilitate the construction and expansion.
“After the opening of the second mall in Cagayan de Oro, then next in Zamboanga City, now here comes Butuan, we hope will be able to generate big business for Mindanao. The location, is significant as in this part of Eastern Mindanao, this would be our very first,” Tiu added.
According to the management, SM Butuan will have 122 long term tenants and will open with a target of 90% occupancy.
The construction of the mall in Butuan City was supposed to have started in 2016 but according to SM, several issues pushed the start of work on the site.
“We will have a sizeable mall for Butuan, since its being built on a major city, the capital of Caraga Region. The mall will also feature four Cinemas, with adequate parking areas on the front as well as on the back, we will also have parking on the other half of the 3rd floor.”
SMPHI is looking into future mall projects for Toril in Davao and another in Zamboanga City but declined to bare details as the management is still in the planning stages.