West Acres

Aerial view of West Acres.

West Acres Shopping Center (located at I-29 and 13th Avenue) opened for business on August 2, 1972. The mall was conceived and built by Bill Schlossman,a Fargo investor and owner of the Black Building. The plan for West Acres began in about 1967. Schlossman originally wanted to build a retail center in downtown Fargo. He approached the Fargo Urban Renewal Agency, with his plans which included Sears-Roebuck, as one of the confirmed anchor stores. The city rejected the idea and Schlossman looked south and west of Fargo for land for his shopping center. The initial structure was designed by the firm Foss, Engelstad and Foss architects, and Meinecke-Johnson Construction Company as project managers. When West Acres Shopping Center opened it had 52 retailers, including Sears and deLendrecie’s. In 1973, Dayton’s opens its first store outside Minnesota at West Acres, and in 1979 J.C. Penney’s moved out of downtown Fargo to the mall. These anchor stores contributed to the success of West Acres, but it also meant a decline for downtown Fargo. This decline continued until the 2000s, when the downtown district began to see a renewal due to Renaissance Zone program, which provides both property tax and income tax incentives to owners who invest in Renaissance Zone properties.
In 1979, the mall underwent an expansion, and in 2000 Brad Schlossman, Chief Executive Officer of the West Acres Development, unveiled a $19 million renovation project. This included the construction of a Food Court and a complete mall renovation. Today West Acres is encompass approximately 950,000 square feet, and has more than 120 stores.

"West Acres: The Beginning" http://westacres.com/about.php
"only 10 years: A chronological history of West Acres growth” Howard Binford’s Guide. Moorhead: Howard Binford, Vol. 15, No. 2 (August 1982), p. 24.