Former mall in Taunton may become a FedEx hub
Long-struggling mall closed in 2020 and soon could be a shipping center
The Silver City Galleria in Taunton shortly after it closed in 2020. Many former mall sites are being put to other uses.
By Catherine Carlock, Globe Staff

An arm of Memphis-based FedEx Corp. is looking to build a 560,000-square-foot distribution center at the site of the former Silver City Galleria in Taunton, according to documentation filed with the city.

FedEx would pay $165 million for former mall site and create 150 jobs, the majority of which would be part time, the Taunton Daily Gazette reported, citing public documents on file with the city. The documents were not immediately available to the Globe.

A FedEx spokesperson confirmed the project to the Globe but declined to discuss specifics.

“FedEx Ground is engaged in discussions with local officials for the potential leasing of a package distribution center in Taunton,’’ the spokesperson said in a statement.

“They are considering a significant, long-term capital investment in Massachusetts and planning the development of a new, build-to-suit facility that could accommodate the package volume overflow of existing facilities in South Boston, MA and Hartford, CT.,’’ Kroll LLC vice president Eileen Egan said in a letter of intent to the city, cited by the paper. A representative from Kroll, a New York-based consulting firm, did not immediately have the letter on hand.

The proposed project comes as malls and now-empty big-box anchor stores across Massachusetts are on the hunt for new uses. Life-science lab space has been proposed at the shuttered former Lord & Taylor stores at malls in Natick, Braintree, and Burlington, for example. In Watertown, the former Arsenal Mall has been transformed into a 1 million-square-foot mixed-use development, dubbed Arsenal Yards, with luxury housing, restaurants, and amenities including rock-climbing gym Central Rock Gym, veterinary care facility Bond Vet, and a pop-up beer garden from Mighty Squirrel Brewing Co. CambridgeSide, in East Cambridge, is repurposing several of its larger corner stores into lab and office space, and its entire third floor has been converted as well.

After years of struggles and a 2019 foreclosure filing, the Silver City Galleria closed in 2020 — shortly before the COVID pandemic hit. The building was demolished and in June 2021 an affiliate of Portman Holdings, an Atlanta-based hotel and office developer, acquired the site for $75 million, according to a North Bristol County deed. The seller was Thibeault Development of Everett.

Catherine Carlock can be reached at Follow her on Twitter @bycathcarlock.