After sitting vacant for about a year and suffering neglect by its former owner, the renovation of the former Story City outlet mall here nears completion, and space is available for lease.


The new owner, Accurate Development, of Des Moines, has worked since June making major improvements to the 50,000-square-foot building, renovating a structure many in the community have considered an eyesore.


From the start, Accurate Development’s plan was to rehab the entire project, said Jared Johnson last spring, one of the owners of the real-estate development firm.


The inside was entirely gutted and renovated. The exterior was updated with neutral-colored panels to replace the red and blue formerly associated with the mall.


The mall will be used for retail and flex space, such as offices and showrooms. Spaces are available for lease, starting at a minimum size of 5,000 square feet. Tyler Frederiksen, of Norsemen Realty Team, in Story City, is handling the leasing agreements.


“We have several interested tenants already,” said Johnson, who is a third-generation employee of Accurate Development.


The company owns property in Des Moines, Urbandale and Waukee.


“We thought this was a good opportunity — especially with its location on the interstate,” Johnson said.


Accurate Development purchased the property for $500,000.


The VF Factory Outlet Mall perviously in this location closed in October of 2017 after being in business for more than 25 years.


In February, the property was the subject of a failed school bond issue that would have built a football and track stadium at the site.


The improvements to the property are a big step in the right direction, according to city officials.


“We stand tall with the major renovation and restoration taking place at the former mall,” City Administrator Mark Jackson said in a recent statement.


“It will stand tall along with the vibrant downtown and Interstate 35 business districts.”