An artist's rendering of possible development on the old Sears site at University and I-630. (The Doctors Building is in the background.)
In the next year and a half to two years, the 16 acres at the northwest corner of University Avenue and Interstate 630, the old Sears site, will transform into a development featuring retail, restaurants and a hotel — or two — called The District at Midtown
John Doubleday of Shop Companies of Dallas said demolition of the old Sears building will come in the fourth quarter of this year, and that more information would be forthcoming soon now that landowner Provident Realty
is close to a deal on the first hotel. The hotel will be located roughly where Arkansas Specialty Orthopaedics offices are now.
Doubleday said there will be nine pads for retail/restaurant lease, and that the development will feature some companies new to Little Rock. A second hotel is planned an area just west of the Doctors Building on the northern section of the 31-acre tract.
The development will involve a change in access from University to I-630, which is being widened from six to eight lanes. (That project is expected to be complete in 2020; the Arkansas Department of Transportation awarded a bid from Manhattan Road and Bridge construction company April 9.)
The site was once considered a possibility for the Little Rock Technology Park,
but was rejected in favor of the downtown location.