A property that has been vacant for about four years after being the longtime home to a VF Factory Outlet Mall is getting a new life. Once filled with shoppers, it's being transformed into a manufacturing facility that will produce products for farmers.

The VF Factory Outlet Mall operated in Story City for over a quarter of a century before closing four years ago this month. The former mall building is in a prime location, along I-35, in the town north of Ames. Hopes were that the location would be turned into a football and track stadium but a school bond issue was voted down in February of 2018. The property was then purchased by a development company, renovated, and will soon have a new tenant.

WHO-TV reports that Dose Steelworks has bought the former VF Factory Outlet Mall and has begun work on the building. The company will be relocating into the 120,000 square-foot building from their current building in Bouton, Iowa. That location is just 30,000 square feet.

According to the Ames Tribune, Dose Steelworks is "an international manufacturer of Headhunter combine trailers, corn reels, detachable rear hitches, rock boxes and Insane Impact LED trailers. The company also does custom fabrication for regional companies."

This got me thinking about two former anchor stores that are sitting empty at Lindale Mall in Cedar Rapids. Granted the former Younkers store has had temporary tenants since its closure but I don't believe anything's been happening at the former Sears store. Both Sears and Younkers closed in 2018. The years continue to pass and, hopefully, the owners of the mall will find someone that wants to make them their home soon.

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