The sprawling American Dream entertainment and shopping plaza in the Meadowlands is on track for completion in the spring 2019, Gov. Phil Murphy said Tuesday.
Triple Five, the company behind the $5 billion project, opened the East Rutherford construction site on Tuesday to public officials, business leaders and media.
“It is a dream that is finally coming to fruition,” Murphy said at the site, flanked by labor and union officials, and county and state lawmakers.
Once completed, the 3 million-square-foot complex will feature an indoor amusement and water park, indoor ski and snow park, aquarium, hockey rink, performing arts theater and more than a dozen restaurants.
Last week, Triple Five also announced the mall will also feature a food hall operated by the Munchies digital food channel and website. Triple Five also owns and operates the Mall of America in Minnesota and West Edmonton Mall in Canada, two of the largest in North America.
The American Dream project started in 2003 as Xanadu, but construction stalled in 2006 under the original developer, Mills Corp. For years since, the unfinished structure towered over the New Jersey Turnpike, casting doubts it would be completed.
“There have been a lot of naysayers for this project. Now we’re proving the naysayers wrong,” said Bergen County Building Trades President Rick Sabato, whose unions are staffing construction of the project.
Lawmakers project 16,000 jobs from the opening of American Dream and 6,700 new jobs from the ensuing ancillary economy.