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VALLEY AND VENTURA COUNTY | VENTURA COUNTY REVIEW

The Oaks Adds Tenants, Plans Exterior Upgrade

October 20, 1998

Competition for the Ventura County shopping dollar has risen greatly since The Oaks mall opened in Thousand Oaks in the late 1970s. With each new shopping center development, options for retail customers have multiplied.

In an effort to maintain the appeal and lure of The Oaks, officials have begun a push to upgrade the location. Recent and upcoming additions to the tenant mix include Ann Taylor and Talbot's stores, the Pottery Barn and the Cheesecake Factory.

And the mall improvements are not limited to the inside.

Construction has begun on a circular driveway at the north entrance of the center that will serve as the main entrance for drop-off customers and disabled shoppers.

"It is predominantly to increase customer convenience and access, to provide better service," said mall General Manager Rebecca Bresson. "The mall is 20 years old, and people weren't necessarily thinking of these things back then."

The entryway will include colored ceramic tile, a raised decorative planter, wrought iron, colored concrete walkways, outdoor seating and accent lighting. The driveway is expected to be completed by early November, Bresson said, in time for the planned Dec. 1 opening of the Cheesecake Factory.

"Depending on what happens once we get the Cheesecake Factory opened and other things planned for 1999, we may need to offer valet service," Bresson said. "We've done valet service during the holidays for five or six years. But the [circular driveway] will give us the ability to run valet parking service, if we chose to do it, year-round."

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