Empire Outlets, the city's first outlet mall is expected to open it's doors in St. George next year. The developer - BFC Partners says foreign investors are showing interest in the 1.2 billion dollar project.
"Over the past couple of months we have had a spurt of international interest from various retailers trying to break into the market in the United States. They have realized the potential in the foot traffic capabilities," said Joseph Ferrara of BFC Partners.
Ferrara along with representatives from the New York Wheel, another development project taking place in St. George were among those that participated in a real estate seminar, Thursday.
"This event is important not just for Staten Island but for all the boroughs. Today our businesses are no longer limited to our local. We are able to engage with clients across the globe," said Ron Molcho of the Staten Island Board of Realtors.
The annual conference is usually held on Staten Island, but this year it was moved to the Dyker Beach Golf Course in Brooklyn near the Verrazano Bridge. Molcho says a record 300 people attended and the event that was held outside of Staten Island because a larger venue was needed with more access to all 5 boroughs. NY1's Amanda Faranacci was a moderato.
"We often hear alot about Staten Island getting a bad rap but over the last couple of years in large part because of the development that is planned here we have been hearing some really exciting and good things," said Faranacci.
Another trend that many of the brokers say they're seeing is that people are continuing to be priced out of other boroughs like Manhattan and Brooklyn. They are moving to Staten Island.
"We are seeing an influx of different communities coming to our area so I think its important for realtors to be versed in the different cultures these people bring," said a broker.
Emerging communities like St. George the brokers say are a wise investment.