Butler Shopping District ranked most visited mall by recent survey

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GAINESVILLE, Fla. (WCJB) – From early January 2021 to late September, Placer Labs reported that nearly 15 million people visited the Butler Shopping District.

Butler Shopping District ranked most visited mall by recent survey(WCJB)

Popular stores and restaurants like Anthropology and PF Changs draw shoppers from across North Central Florida, drawing even more people to local businesses like The Village Jeweler, which opened in the Oaks Mall in 1985.

Owners Mike and Cynthia Thibault said their business has grown exponentially since opening in Butler.

“Even with the pandemic, we’ve had the best year we’ve ever had in our business history and 2021 we’re getting past that,” Cynthia said.

Bespoke jeweler and designer Harrison Thibault said the plaza attracts shoppers from all over North Central Florida, keeping them local rather than heading to Jacksonville or Orlando to shop.

“Since this downtown has grown, have a nice lunch at Cheesecake Factory and then go shopping,” Harrison said. “You don’t have to drive an hour and a half and deal with the traffic.”

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From the east, center, west and north, the four main sections of Butler continue to expand, providing more options and employment opportunities for the community. Greater Gainesville Chamber President and CEO Eric Godet said he was looking forward to what happened next.

“Retailers are listening to where people are, what is around us and where people shop,” added Godet. “The rest of us need to recognize the power of our region and the impact we have in this community. “

As the neighborhood continues to grow, Butler recently announced that the Ford Garage will open in the summer of 2022.

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Edwin S. Wolfe