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Bridgewater Commons
Bridgewatermall08.jpg
Southern side of Bridgewater Commons
Location Bridgewater, New Jersey
Coordinates 40°35′11″N 74°37′06″W / 40.586492°N 74.618415°W / 40.586492; -74.618415
Address 400 Commons Way
Opening date February 26, 1988; 34 years ago (February 26, 1988)
Developer The Hahn Company
Management Trademark Property Company
Owner JPMorgan Asset Management
No. of stores and services 170
No. of anchor tenants 3
Total retail floor area 970,000 sq ft (90,000 m2)
No. of floors 3 (2 in Bloomingdale's)
Parking Parking lot and 3-story parking garage east of AMC
Public transit access Bus transport NJ Transit NJ Transit bus: 65, 114

Bridgewater Commons is a fully enclosed upscale shopping mall located in Bridgewater Township, New Jersey. The mall is located at the intersection of Route 22 and Route 202/206 and borders I-287. The mall opened on February 26, 1988 and has a gross leasable area of 900,000 sq ft (84,000 m2). Bridgewater Commons is owned by JPMorgan Asset Management.

The mall was expanded in 2005 and 2006 to include a lifestyle center called "The Village at Bridgewater Commons". It is anchored by Crate & Barrel and Maggiano's Little Italy, and contains 15 other stores and restaurants. The mall is currently filled with 158 stores and has a total of 170 stores.

The mall's anchors stores are Bloomingdale's, Lord & Taylor, Macy's, and AMC Dine-In Theatres.

Dining and entertainment

As of November 2008, the Food Court has reopened as have some of the restaurants within. Changes to the food court consist of new lighting, relocated and new dining space (openings looking down to the second floor have been closed off), new flooring, new seating and renovated eateries. The former space of the Food Court was renovated. In addition to the food court, there are additional dining and entertainment options.

History

In the 1960s, a township redevelopment agency combined various plots of land in Bridgewater, and then it declared the entire area blighted so that the land could be sold to one developer. Bridgewater township signed a contract with The Hahn Company, a California-based mall-developer, in 1985. The Prudential's real estate division joined the development project later.

Bridgewater Commons opened in February 1988 with anchor stores Macy's, Hahnes and Sterns. On June 18, 1988, a Disney Store opened, which was the first Disney Store located outside of California. On October 18, 1989, Hahnes changed to Lord & Taylor. In 2001, Sterns closed and changed to Bloomingdale's in 2002. The mall complex pursued a major expansion in 1991 to add two eight-story office buildings to the complex, which would include 578,000 sq ft (53,700 m2). of office space and a 300-room hotel. The effort was initiated as part of a longstanding urban renewal project. By 2000, with a 347-room Bridgewater Marriott Hotel already under the construction, the mall's developers pushed ahead to develop the office towers planned for the complex. The two towers later opened, occupied mostly by Sanofi-Aventis.

Since opening, mall management and Somerset Medical Center have sponsored a HealthHike mall walking program to give walkers an indoors, secured, and climate-controlled environment in which to walk. Anyone can obtain a name tag to enter the mall starting at 6:30 a.m. Monday through Saturday and 9 a.m. Sunday. The program also includes a monthly meeting at 8:30 a.m. on the first Wednesday of each month from October through June to discuss health-related topics. Since opening, the mall has also featured an annual Christmas display and kids photo opportunity with Santa Claus in addition to a photo opportunity with the Easter Bunny around Easter time.

In 1993, Bridgewater Commons became one of the first malls in the state to ban smoking, joining 300 of 1800 malls nationwide that prohibited smoking on mall grounds.

The mall was extensively renovated in 2005 and 2006. The mall temporarily closed the food court and removed the scenic elevator and the stage located in the main atrium of the mall. Two elevators were added replacing a dead storefront and corridor of the mall. In 2006, the mall added a lifestyle center disconnected to the mall's property. They named the lifestyle center, The Village at Bridgewater Commons. It is anchored by Crate & Barrel and Maggiano's Little Italy, and contains 15 other stores and restaurants.

In 2008, the original Disney Store closed their location after 22 years. Then, on August 13, 2016, the Disney store reopened their store six years prior after being shuttered.

In August of 2010, The Cheesecake Factory officially opened for business at Bridgewater Commons.

The mall has become a major focus in Bridgewater and an attraction throughout the area, bringing new residents to the township and shoppers to the mall which "dominates the retail industry in Somerset County." You can often find students of Immaculata High School dressed in their blue and white uniforms or students of Somerville High School walking to and around the mall right after school as it is so close by.

In January 2019, McCormick & Schmick's, located right next door to The Cheesecake Factory, abruptly closed. Then 13 months later, Uncle Julio’s opened their first New Jersey location in the former M&S space.

In November 2019 the mall was bought by JPMorgan Asset Management.

On January 31, 2020, Marriott opened another hotel about 3/4 of a mile away from the mall, called, AC Hotels by Marriott, along with a rooftop restaurant, called The Bradford, which opened a month after the hotel opened. During the construction of the hotel, a brand-new Zinburger opened its 17th location, but later closed all its locations, except Marlboro and Clifton locations because of the COVID-19 pandemic. It will be replaced with Tommy's Tavern + Tap .

On August 27, 2020, it was announced that Lord & Taylor will be closing all stores, including the Bridgewater Commons location. The store will close on February 23, 2021, three days before the mall's anniversary.

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