A rendering of Towne Centre Laurel, the project replacing Laurel Mall. (Courtesy Greenberg Gibbons)

The developers who began tearing down Laurel Mall last summer announced Tuesday four prominent tenants for what will replace it, namely a Regal movie theater, Harris Teeter, Sports Authority and a new Burlington Coat Factory.

Greenberg Gibbons, lead developer of the project, announced that all four retailers had signed leases and that it was beginning preliminary work this month on turning the mall into the sort of open air, mixed-use town center that has grown in popularity as the allure of enclosed malls fades.

Towne Centre Laurel is slated to ultimately have 400,000 square feet of retail as well as 435 apartments. Construction on the $130 million project is scheduled to begin in earnest next month and the first new shops are scheduled to open in April of next year. The apartments won’t likely be done until the spring of 2016.

Based in Owings Mills, Greenberg Gibbons has made other attempts in Maryland to revitalize failing malls and shopping centers, including Hunt Valley Towne Centre in Baltimore County and Annapolis Towne Centre. The Laurel project might be able to take advantage of growth nearby at Fort Meade thanks to the Pentagon’s base realignment and closure initiative (BRAC).

Brian Gibbons, Greenberg’s chairman and chief executive, issued a statement saying the project “will bring new life to the site, and our high-quality anchors will help attract more top-notch retailers and restaurants to a deserving community.” Greenberg’s partners in Laurel are Somera Capital Management and AEW Capital Management.

Getting a new plan in place for the mall after the economic collapse has taken years, but Laurel Mayor Craig A. Moe praised the developers for “keeping the dream of redeveloping the property alive and viable, after our city waited so patiently.”

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