La Plaza Mall begins expansion plans

La Plaza Mall in Mcallen

Attention mall shoppers, La Plaza Mall is looking to add more stores.

La Plaza Mall expantion is now in the works.

It looks like now we are getting serious about it," McAllen Economic Development Corporation (EDC) president Keith Patridge said.

This week the city of McAllen drafted an economic development agreement with the mall's owner, Simon Property Group.

"We are beginning to see the economy in our area pick up again," Patridge said.

As the mall generates more sales, that means more revenue for the city of McAllen.

Not only will it bring more locals to the mall, but shoppers from across the border, to strengthen already one the largest retail sales per capita in the state.

The EDC estimates that 35-40 percent of La Plaza Mall shoppers come from Mexico and they like to spend.

Earlier this month the San Antonio Hispanic Chamber of Commerce presented a study in partnership with Visa, showing tourists from Mexico spent almost $900 million in Hidalgo County in 2012.

Almost half of that money is spent on clothes.

La plaza Mall has yet to release plans, but shoppers say they welcome any expansion.

"It TMs super packed on the weekends, you can TMt even walk. It feels like we are at school, said shopper Tiffany Ochoa.

"You get frustrated because there are too many people," said shopper Diego Sifuentes.

As for how they will expand, that will depend on the budget.

"If you have the money you can do anything, Patrdige said. They can add a second floor or expand on the ground level."

While no stores have announced they will be moving in, shoppers have a few ideas.

"The Apple store," shopper Joseph Torres said.

"A Forever 21 here would be awesome," Ochoa said.

Spending by Mexican nationals in Hidalgo County grew by about 17.5 percent from 2011 to 2012.

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