Jim Kirkos (Courtesy photo)
1. Rippling economic effect
"Give these folks the benefit of the doubt," Kirkos said. Triple Five, after all only came into the fray in 2011.
"All the regional economies grew because of (their other massive mall developments, the) Mall of America and the West Edmonton Mall," he said.
"Give this a chance to be successful because when it is successful it will have a great positive ripple effect on the economies of New Jersey, the local community and the greater Meadowlands."
Plus, the American Dream is expected to bring around 20,000 jobs to the site and surrounding area, Kirkos said.
"If we ban together and leverage this project everybody in this region benefits."
2. It's actually coming along nicely
A senior executive from American Dream invites Kirkos, and others, to walk the site every few months.
They give him and others the access so they can answer questions from their members.
The last time he was inside was about a week and a half ago.
"They were just bringing in test dummies that were going to be used to test the roller coasters," Kirkos said, adding that all four are built.
"I just was blown away," he said, of the tile, the design, the decor and the architecture. "It's not just another shopping place. It's beautiful."
There will be botanical gardens in one of the shopping areas and also over the hockey rink, he said.
3. They're perfectionists
family, who are Triple Five, have been known to rip out tile because it wasn't installed perfectly, Kirkos said, or an architectural or design element if it doesn't look as good in real life as it did on paper.
If they like a skylight and decide they want to add more of them, Kirkos said, they'll call back the architects and engineers, move the HVAC, get permits and deal with delays to the overall project.
"I know that has happened with a bunch of design features," Kirkos said. "If there's a construction delay, it's because they want to make it spectacular."
And, he added, it's working.
"I got the sense that these people knew what it was to create an experience."
4. This could make the area a primary destination
American Dream makes the area a "primary" destination, as opposed to just a place to go when there's an event at MetLife -- or a less expensive alternative to NewYork City, Kirkos said.
"We now go from an ancillary destination to a primary destination," he said.
"Then we can get people to Park Avenue in Rutherford, downtown Secaucus, the boulevard in Wood-Ridge and Hasbrouck Heights -- places that have vibrant downtowns."
The ripple effect, he said, "is enormous."