Simon’s 5th Avenue Mall, located in downtown Anchorage, serves the Anchorage populace with an average annual household income demographic of $93,000 a year. New retail stores include Lululemon Athletica in a 3,200-square-foot space and a Bath and Body Works. Serving the same population demographic, the Dimond Center Mall has added a 31,000 sq. ft. H&M with clothing for men, women, and children. The 35,000 sq. ft. Nordstrom Rack was recently added to the midtown Sears Mall and offers discounted prices from 30 to 70 percent of typical Nordstrom prices. A NorthFace store will be open November 6, in a downtown Anchorage location, to add to the local outdoor retail sector.
Anchorage is also seeing increased commercial development in the near future. A mixed-use center is being planned in Eagle River (a Northeast suburb within the Municipality) and an outlet mall is being designed by Cook Inlet Region Inc. in South Anchorage. A new 120-room hotel is underway in East Anchorage and new office centers are being considered in the downtown area.
Despite the recent fall in oil prices, Alaska’s investment in the retail sector continues to grow. New businesses are popping up in and around the Anchorage area. These new developments benefit from both the 2015 Permanent Fund Dividend of $2072 per resident and dividends payed to Alaska Native corporation shareholders each year. These annual dividends, coupled with the lack of a state-level sales and individual income tax, has proven beneficial to companies entering the market.
Sample of food markets and new restaurants that are expanding in the city
South Restaurant & Coffeehouse, locally referred to as “South,” is a brand new restaurant by the owners of the award-winning Snow City Café. Also expanding is the Moose’s Tooth, ranked 3rd best pizza restaurant by tripadvisor.com. Owners Rod Hancock and Matt Jones recently purchased a new building in Anchorage’s Midtown business district and early plans call for transforming the space into an artisan market which could include a Moose’s Tooth pizza shop, Kaladi Brothers coffee and specialty artist and food sales stores.
Restaurants located in the growing Glenn Square Mall, will include a new Southwestern style restaurant called the Blue Coyote Bar & Grill, a Baked Alaska Alehouse. New restaurants in the Tudor (U-Med) area will include Tequila Kitchen Express, a new Mexican-styled restaurant and an addition to the portfolio of Serranos restaurants. Plans are scheduled for additional bar and grill locations for Flattop Pizza + Pool and Humpy’s alehouse.