Shoppers used to fill Regency Square Mall, but in recent years their numbers have dropped. According to management, 85 percent of storefronts were leased in 2015.
Right now, occupancy is at about 48 percent. In the coming months, two new tenants are slated to move in.
Arlington 20/20 and Feeding Northeast Florida have teamed up for a permanent food pantry.
“In the immediate area of Arlington there are over 15,000 people that are food insecure so there’s a high concentration of people that are hungry in this particular area,” Frank Castillo, CEO of Feeding Northeast Florida, said.
The groups already provide meals each month at mobile pantries.
The new Arlington Market Pantry storefront will allow them to offer more services.
“It’s not just giving food but also making workforce development programs available, working on our schools, making sure families have an avenue to transition out of poverty,” Dr. Joy Hervey, of Arlington 20/20, said.
Impact Church is also slated to relocate its services and Christian academy to the old Belk location by the end of 2020.
Mall manager James Kramer told Action News Jax that the church's 4,000-person congregation will mean more foot traffic -- which could attract more tenants.
He says management plans to offer shorter leases, so businesses can see if opening up shop at the mall is feasible.
The goal is to breathe new life into the mall and surrounding community.
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