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Not a Fan of the New Outlet Mall in Livermore

Paragon outlet mall: How would you rate it?

I'm really happy Livermore is boosting its economy with the new Paragon outlet mall, but after two trips there I've decided it is not for me.

I just cannot shop in peace knowing that I face a 30-minute wait for a restroom. I heard the police had to be called in to remove some women from the men's room. Well who could blame them for resorting to desperate measures given the long lines.

Add to that the horrendous traffic on I-580 leading up to the ill-designed entrance (for the majority of vehicles, there's only one way in and out of this place) and navigating the muddy gravel parking lot, and it becomes even less appealing.

The food situation isn't great, either. The food court is too small for a place that's drawing thousands of people a day, so there are lines there, and if you're lucky to get something to eat, you'll have to fight for a spot to sit down.

Beyond that there's just a popcorn stand, a really cramped overpriced yogurt shop ($10 for a small yogurt and a water) and the same-old tiresome Starbucks.

I was disappointed that there aren't any stand-alone sit-down restaurants on the site, which would provide something of a shoppers' refuge, especially given that the mall is difficult to get to and not close to anything beyond B.J.s across the freeway.

I guess lines are to be expected at a place like this, but it was funny to see people waiting in lines to get into the high-end stores, roped off like a night club. Are the deals really that great?

It wasn't surprising to see the quintessential melting down children. Poor things. No kid likes to shop. But I was shocked to see so many dogs there.

Yes, dogs! People are bringing their dogs to the outlet mall. Yes, this is absolutely ridiculous. I watched one urinate on a trash receptacle and another go crazy barking at a child and decided it was time to go.

And I won't be back.

What grade would you give the new outlet mall shopping experience? Tell us in the comments.

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

Sandy November 25, 2012 at 05:31 PM
@Mike S...... You are dead on with your comments. Thank you for adding some sense to this comment thread. I love to shop. I have zero desire to even get near the outlets..... Although I'm sure my curiosity will get the best of me at some point....AFTER the holidays. I for one do enjoy sitting down for a nice lunch to rejuvenate and go out again. I would not even consider driving 5 miles in the opposite direction to go have a nice lunch or dinner in downtown Livermore if I came from San Jose or Burlingame or San Francisco. Mr. Marchand, if you believe that that is happening, you have seriously got your head in the sand. The traffic is brutal..... and will only get worse. I for one am sad that this monstrosity has been built in our city. But it's here..... and we have to live with it.... I do hope it brings in the funds you all speak of. And I hope that money goes to hiring more police officers. We're going to need them. And how about some of those funds going into our schools? Our high schools and middle schools look like crap. Can we stop concentrating on the damn wineries? Take a good look at the high schools. They need a face lift. BAD!
Sandy November 25, 2012 at 05:39 PM
No one is going to move from Tracy, Brentwood or Mountain House to live in Livermore. Livermore is nice, so is Dublin and Pleasanton. They are just too expensive.
Livermore resident November 25, 2012 at 05:40 PM
You spell like an eight year old!
Darwinian Justice November 25, 2012 at 06:21 PM
I know, right?!? The empty fields that the facility sits on now kept employment levels at almost 100 percent! I'll take 50% of those jobs over no jobs at all.
LivermoreLoveorLeaveIt November 25, 2012 at 06:39 PM
Well said Michelle. It's new. They built it and now the people will come. People flock and even campout for the new (i-phones, i-pads) and the perceived bargins (black friday). This mall features both, and was well timed for the holiday season. It is only Phase I. More is coming, potentially with improvements in mind from lessons learned in Phase I. Anybody remember Stoneridge's first day? The reviews were even more harsh than these. Mike S....you're an inconsiderate moron, of which, there are way too many on this planet. Please don't reproduce.
Kathy Montgomery November 26, 2012 at 07:07 PM
I have loved shopping at the mall so far; checking out all the stores and what they have to offer. I have purchased a couple of "practical" items that I needed. The exercise and being in the outside/inside environment are perks while I am there. I am from Livermore and enter the mall via Jack London. No congestion problems for me so far. Having said that.....I am a dog owner and an animal lover. Are there any signs posted that say "please no pets"? If there are, the rule would need to be enforced. I think state law prohibits animals from being in the stores and in the food court unless it is a service animal. I am not fully clear on that law. If there are pets in the areas outside the stores, they will go potty there. I do picture myself needing to avoid pet messes while going from store to store. Obviously the animal barking at people or at another animal can't happen. So, folks either need to leave pets home if they are not allowed. If they are allowed, folks need to use common sense, and mall security should be very vigilant with removing "violators". I love the new mall!
Rich Buckley November 26, 2012 at 07:37 PM
Good luck with that: http://youtu.be/vcmfCXwAFs4
Camaro on Cinderblocks November 26, 2012 at 08:14 PM
The planning committee should never be allowed to plan anything in the future. Freeway exit and parking is a disaster. Police just standing around doing nothing to help the traffic flow and not opening up the overflow parking area even though the traffic is backed up the freeway a mile long.
Chris November 26, 2012 at 08:33 PM
This author sounds like the type of person who would move next to an airport then complain about noise. Of course its going to be crowded since its new and of course people are going to do dumb things like bring their dogs. Welcome to humanity. If you want to be a real critic you would not form an entire opinion on the basis of the first few weeks of being open, you would return in 6 months.
Michael Delfino November 27, 2012 at 12:17 AM
A brand new outlet mall, directly off a main freeway, opening just in time for the Christmas rush was busy? WWWWHHHHHAAAAAAAAATTTTT?!?!?!?!?! I'm shocked! Seriously, as has been stated, wait six months, and then evaluate from there. Right now there's still the new factor of people going to see what the hype is about. Once that and the Christmas rush has passed, then you'll get a better gauge of what it really is. The only legitimate criticisms one can make at this point are things like the selection at the food court, more benches along the way, etc... Things like the traffic, crowd/line control, entry/exit points, etc. will all work themselves out with time.
Ruby November 27, 2012 at 07:14 PM
Mike S. nice try but a swing and a miss. I am there during normal working hours and am not a janitor. Your quest for trolls on goes on pointless. What are you, about 12 years old?
DuenasFam November 27, 2012 at 07:26 PM
Mike S, yes there was a bike trail added. My husband and I used it but will tell you, getting over to the outlet (and yes, we used the crosswalk with police there), still didn't stop people from almost hitting us. The problem is the continual flow of traffic. If the light is green, they will continue to drive into the intersection even though there is no place to go.
El Newman November 27, 2012 at 09:33 PM
I remember in the 80's when the Livermore City Council was very anti growth. It took forever to get one or two fast food places in town. Look at it now... I enjoy having shopping, but what has happened is really over the top. The quality of life is much diminished, and crime has moved in. I think I can live without a few shopping malls.
Shannon November 28, 2012 at 12:26 AM
The sizes at this mall are terrible. I'm not tiny but the average American woman is a lot larger than me. Where's the Lane Bryant? Every other outlet mall has one. Instead the stores seem to have tiny clothes that maybe go up to size 8 in juniors which is a size 4 in normal clothes. Also how about some stores that are not just clothes. I don't get people who buy ugly stuff just because it has a brand name on it. A book store and a game store would rock.
Local November 28, 2012 at 01:21 AM
I agree, this outlet mall was a MAJOR disappointment! I went on opening day (heck, why not see what all the fuss is about...) and was severely let down by not only the incredibly high prices on EVERYTHING but also the lack of, well, good stuff!!!!! Damn sure wasn't going to wait in line just to get into a damn store for still-overpriced merchandise. And the food court was a nightmare, long lines and nowhere to sit down, let alone stand, and the food choices were pretty bad. Soggy sandwich n' smoothie, slice of pizza, fried chicken or subway, anyone? Nah, I'll eat before I go if I ever go again. I was really excited for this, too. I'd rather to go to Folsom, Gilroy or Vacaville!
max November 28, 2012 at 05:06 AM
Mike S - Michelle did think first. You clearly did not. My wife and I took with our Dog in tow there and back, last Sunday. There is a wide, separated bike path the entire way. We passed two other families doing the same thing.
Positive Thinker November 28, 2012 at 06:22 AM
People are just complaining too much. Just enjoy the fact that we have an outlet mall nearby. As this is phase one, the only way to go from here is to get better. I'm pretty sure all the complains listed here are already being planned to be addressed on the next development. Chill people be positive!!!!
LostinTranslation November 28, 2012 at 06:50 PM
I agree with you, Positive Thinker, and appreciate your comments. Enough already with the negative comments. This is still a free country. We have a choice to frequent the mall or not. I was at the outlets on opening day with a friend, and we had a wonderful time. There was a lot of energy and excitement, especially among those of us from Livermore. Frankly, the negativity being displayed here is disconcerting and embarrassing to many people who live here. We cannot control the amount of people who decide to shop whenever and wherever they may please. The novelty and newness will wear off after the holidays, and it will be "just another place to shop." I am looking forward to shopping there and for the next phases, as well. I want to be surrounded by people who want to be there, not by the naysayers. There are over 2,000 jobs that have been created by this new shopping center. Perhaps the Patch folks should create a "positive" and "negative" comment board regarding this issue. Speaking for myself, I have grown really tired of the negativity.
Local November 28, 2012 at 07:02 PM
"This is still a free country." - meaning if we want to complain about something that bothers us, we can and we WILL! Of course we have the choice to frequent the mall or not, just like we have the choice to buy crap there or not. If you don't like to hear negativity then you're in the wrong place. This comments section is for people to share their OPINIONS, and some will be positive while others will be negative. If you want to be surrounded by happy people, move to Disney Land :)
Bri November 29, 2012 at 08:09 AM
I work at the Outlet mall and am there all hours and all days of the week. The plan is to open a whole other mall just for restaurants and more parking right next to Paragon. For now I would stay away from the mall, and come back after the holidays it really is a cool mall with some cool stores. But I agree completely the entrance and exit situation is really silly. Happy Holodays everyone!
Cherry November 29, 2012 at 10:48 PM
DOGS?!! SMH...
Cherry November 29, 2012 at 11:03 PM
THANK YOU! I do not understand when or why it became okay to bring dogs into stores. I see it more & more & still don't get it.
william November 30, 2012 at 01:26 AM
did step on someones toes with my statements about the outlet mall in livermore and is that why it is no longer on the patch.
Serenity Now December 02, 2012 at 06:54 PM
The other day I saw some wise people park their pooch on the cashier counter right inside the Macy's in Stoneridge. We have gone to the dogs.
Serenity Now December 02, 2012 at 07:01 PM
People - consider this a moment - if this is the level of anguish around spending money you don't have (cliffs anyone?) then we really need to get our heads examined. Can we perhaps build more schools and spend on hiring better teachers? Do we really need more stores so we can buy more stuff (that we do NOT need) so we eventually need a bigger box to put all that stuff?
Positive Thinker December 02, 2012 at 11:17 PM
It is cool top share opinions wether neg or pos as long as it is constructive. Share some pos insights too n some Suggestion so this site can be productive as well. I will find it hard to believe there is nothing nice about the new outlet. No matter how nice and exciting Disneyland is, if people Are too negative it will be the saddest place on earth. Let us start with ourselves.
Voter with an ID December 03, 2012 at 04:16 AM
Serenity, how very noble of you to assume that retail dollars wold be better spent lining the pockets of teachers unions and union contractors. Stay away from the mall and donate your millions to schools directly and stop telling everyone else to feel guilty about shopping.
James E Mitchell December 14, 2012 at 05:39 AM
When I saw that they were going to open an outlet there, I thought "well, our city council might not be daft after all". Then I heard that they made the food court smaller than it should be to try to force people to trek into the three blocks we call "downtown", and I realized that calling them daft is too generous. I don't know whom I'm voting for come the next election, but I certainly know whom I'm voting against.
Cherry January 03, 2013 at 01:30 AM
Anyone else getting email alerts to OLD comments? I keep getting email notifications of new comments that are actually old & have already read. Just got one for the above comment. WEIRD & ANNOYING.
Trader Lu January 03, 2013 at 02:04 AM
Yes, it has been happening for about a week.

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