In October 2022, EDENS, a national retail real estate owner, operator and developer with offices around the country and a portfolio of 110 places, acquired Strawberry Village in October, infusing the longstanding, 175,385 square-foot, open-air and grocery-anchored Mill Valley retail property – one of the 94941’s five commercial districts, with energy and excitement.
Now the firm is diving into a series of renovations and additions, starting with a bright, contemporary color palette, new lighting, landscaping, outdoor seating areas, public art and refreshed signage. With a projected completion by early 2024, plans include a reimagined central plaza with outdoor seating, live music and other community-driven events.
“We have loved becoming part of the Marin community and are excited to bring renewed vibrancy to Strawberry Village, envisioning an updated mix of retail and restaurants emphasizing local partners,” said Alexander Ragonese, Vice President, Development for EDENS. “Its 1960s origins as a Town & Country shopping center are well-aligned with EDENS’ purpose of enriching community through human engagement, leveraging placemaking to drive discovery and connectivity.”
The first EDENS-driven activation to launch at Strawberry Village is a new weekly, all-local, all-organic farmers market, held every Tuesday from 10am-2:30pm, starting June 13 and located in the parking lot along the frontage road between West Elm and Starbucks. The market is in conjunction with Marin Community Farmers Markets, which also has year-round markets in Corte Madera (Wednesdays 12-5pm) and at 759 East Blithedale Ave. in the CVS parking lot, on Fridays, 9:30am-2:30pm.
EDENS’ transaction comes on the heels of the company’s acquisition of eight retail properties on the West Coast, from San Diego to Seattle. The March 2022 series of acquisitions includes Alamo Plaza and Gilman District, also in the Bay Area.
“We are excited to expand our west coast portfolio with an asset that is a connector and everyday gathering place for vibrant communities like Mill Valley, Corte Madera and Tiburon,” Jami Passer, the company’s chief investment officer, said in a statement. “This is a neighborhood destination with tremendous place-making opportunities. Through our lens of design, curation and engagement, EDENS will continue to build and enrich Strawberry Village as a dynamic landmark for Marin and the Bay Area.
Taking a holistic approach to transformative place-making, EDENS designs its properties to achieve meaningful weekly trips and dwell time that drive human engagement and a sense of community. Through thoughtful design and curation, places are established as thriving retail destinations, driving impressions and market sales while effectively serving as public realms for social interaction and community engagement.
“We design our places to achieve 3.5 trips per week and 5 hours of dwell time,” Passer said. “We know that when people come together, they feel a part of something bigger than themselves and prosperity follows – economically, socially, culturally and soulfully.”