A more contemporary site plan. Since 1998, Filene's has been rebranded as a Macy's. One might wonder about references to "Interstate-193", and then, "Interstate-293". The spur highway, which runs north of the mall, was originally signed as I-193. After a portion of the F.E. Everett Turnpike was incorporated into the Interstate Highway system in the late '70s, I-193 was redesignated as I-293.

South Willow Street and Interstate 193 (293)
Manchester, New Hampshire

Plans for the first major shopping mall in the Granite State were announced in April 1976, with construction commencing the following July. Developed by Newton, Massachusetts-based Stephen R. Karp, under the auspices of State Properties of New England, MALL OF NEW HAMPSHIRE was built on a 48.6 acre plot, located 2.7 miles southeast of center city Manchester.

The 525,000 square foot, single-level complex accomplished several firsts. It included the first Filene's in New Hampshire (a 1-level store of 60,000 square feet), as well as the first Lechmere built outside Massachusetts (consisting of 1-level and 62,000 square feet). The 12 million dollar mall was also anchored by a 1-level (110,000 square foot) Sears.

At its official dedication, held in August 1977, MALL OF NEW HAMPSHIRE was the state's largest retail center. Inline stores and services included B. Dalton Bookseller, Casual Corner, Chess King, Hickory Farms of Ohio, Music World, Wallachs and a McDonald's fast-food restaurant.

Commercial competitors would eventually include NASHUA MALL & PLAZA (1969) {13 miles southwest, in Nashua}, ROCKINGHAM MALL (1971-1999) {16.3 miles southeast, in the Town of Salem}, PHEASANT LANE MALL (1986) {17.1 miles south, also in Nashua} and MALL AT ROCKINGHAM PARK (1991) {16.1 miles southeast, also in the Town of Salem}.

A prospective renovation of MALL OF NEW HAMPSHIRE first came to light in 1993. The 50 million dollar project got underway in March 1996. Its first phase involved construction of a new 2-level (165,000 square foot) Filene's, at the southwest corner of a newly-enlarged mall site.

After Filene's relocated into their new store, in November 1996, the old location was demolished. In its place was built a 2-level (101,300 square foot) J.C. Penney, which was dedicated April 18, 1998. The mall structure had also been expanded to connect the new Filene's and Penney's stores and Sears was enlarged to 136,400 square feet.

Lechmere's shuttering, in August 1997, provided space for two new junior anchors. Best Buy, occupying 41,000 square feet, came inline October 16, 1998. Kitchen, Etcetera filled the remainder of the space.

When the construction dust settled, in late 1998, MALL OF NEW HAMPSHIRE enveloped 930,000 leasable square feet and over one hundred and twenty stores and services. It followed MALL AT ROCKINGHAM PARK and PHEASANT LANE MALL as the state's third-largest shopping complex.

A new owner came on board in February 1999. The Indianapolis-based Simon Property Group bought fourteen shopping hubs from New England Development, a 1978 reincorporation of State Properties of New England.

After the mall's Kitchen Etcetera store was shuttered in August 2004, it became a Berlin, New Jersey-based A.C. Moore Arts & Crafts. Filene's received a Macy's moniker September 9, 2006.


The Nashua Telegraph
"Mall of New Hampshire" article on Wikipedia
www.simon.com (Simon Property Group)
Hillsborough County, New Hampshire property tax assessor website