LAFAYETTE — A new $50 million development called The Forum is coming to where the Academy and Gattis Town once stood on Johnston Street in Lafayette.
It will soon be the home to a more than 50,000 square foot shopping center.
It's expected to not just be a place to shop, but a place to hear live music as well.
The Forum is expected to bring hundreds of jobs to Acadiana. Some of the businesses include Sneaker Politics, another Legend's location, and a Shipley's Donuts.
The project, which has been in the works for more than two years, is inspired by similar ones in Baton Rouge, Austin, Dallas, and New York City.
Not only will there be places to eat and drink, the plans call for a rooftop veranda, which will overlook the area.
Currently, there's about 40,000 square feet of space available for local as well as national companies.
Many people may be wondering about why midtown Lafayette was chosen for such a development.
“The north and south side of town are great locations, but this was in the middle of Lafayette. I have passed in front of that spot for the last twenty years and just to see an empty parking lot there with nothing going on in the middle of Lafayette is just sad,” Politics owner/developer Derrek Curry said.
Curry says he hopes the new development will a inspire young entrepreneurs to make an investment in this project just as he did when he was younger.
The buildings are also unique in design, which is being done to create cool shadows with its architecture. The space will also be available for live entertainment and events.
“As the sun kind of comes over you’ll get these cool shadows from the greenery hanging over you. But hopefully it'll be a space where someone will be able to take wedding photos or graduation photos, just as another way people can occupy the space to come and shop,” architect Alex Luna said.
“Instead of trying to move to these big cities, where there's more opportunities for this, we’re creating it right here in Lafayette which is amazing,” Curry added.
According to developers, the project is expected to have three additional phases after its grand opening in December of next year.
Developers say they would like to hear from you about what the future holds for this project.
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