UPDATE: Andrea Hicklin, a Gap spokesperson, explained that the Gap and Gap Kids at the Moorestown Mall are among the final stores to be shut down as part of the "long-term real estate strategy" the company outlined in 2007.
Amid all the growth and revitalization buzz surrounding the Moorestown Mall, the shopping center is losing a major retailer at the end of the month.
According to Lisa Wolstromer, senior marketing director for the mall, Gap and Gap Kids will close at the end of January.
The mall has struggled with occupancy in the past, though it added a slew of stores last year, including Cotton On, Crazy 8, Play N Trade, NJ Dollar Mart, the Nailery, Cinnabon and Kids Foot Locker.
Wolstromer painted the loss of the Gap in a positive light, saying it gave the mall "an opportunity ... to recapture that space and repurpose it for another tenant."
"Like any mall, you go through periods of change," she added. "You lose retailers, but you also bring in new retailers who are going to be popular and meet the needs of our customers."
She also noted that Gap has been closing a number of its stores across the country over the last few years. The company announced in 2011 that it would be closing nearly 200 locations by the end of 2013. Wolstromer was unable to say whether the decision to close the Moorestown Mall Gap was made by the clothing retailer or by PREIT, owner of the Moorestown Mall.
As for plans to replace the Gap, Wolstromer said the mall was talking to several different retailers, but couldn't provide any other information at this time.
The new Regal Premium Experience theater—with 3D capabilities, digital projection screens and stadium seating with reclining seats, among other amenities—is expected to open later this year, along with Marc Vetri's Osteria and Firebirds Wood Fired Grill. The additions are part of PREIT's plan to revitalize the mall.
PREIT has yet to announce the other two restaurants it plans to add (using the liquor licenses it purchased from the township last year).