When LOCKHART GARDENS SHOPPING CENTER opened in 1971, the island was abuzz about the new soda fountain and café counter at Woolworth, which was located there. For years, Woolworth was nearly the only outlet on island with a good selection of – sometimes questionable -- household and sundry goods. My, how island living and times have changed!!
After Hurricane Marilyn (1995) destroyed nearly 95% of the then 172,000 square foot Shopping Center, which included a grocery and internal revenue service, it was time for a re-design of the Center. Kmart replaced Woolworth in 1998, and the Lockhart (Mini) Mall which incubates 10 small scale tenants on two levels opened in 1999. By 2005, a new addition which incorporated 14 new tenants including Sprint and Drug Farm, and also the free-standing state of the art Banco Popular, had opened their doors. All of this was followed by McDonald’s new restaurant with drive through in early 2006. Footlocker remains the oldest tenant in constant operation in LOCKHART GARDENS SHOPPING CENTER and will celebrate 25 years in business in 2017! Today, the 122,000 square foot Shopping Center, with ample free customer parking and a varied line up of more than 25 retailers and professional offices, is a frequent and favored stopping off point for both residents and tourists.
Lockhart Realty, Inc., the largest owner of shopping centers in the U.S. Virgin Islands, owns and manages six shopping centers on St. Thomas (Drake’s Passage, Grand Galleria, Fort Mylner Shopping Center and Commercial Center, Red Hook Plaza, Market Square East and Lockhart Gardens Shopping Center) and one shopping center (Orange Grove Shopping Center) on St. Croix.
Approximately 320 acres of undeveloped real estate zone for commercial and residential development is owned by Lockhart Realty, Inc., and is located either adjacent to the primary business and tourist district on St Thomas or on the main highway connecting downtown and the eastern end of St. Thomas.
The parent company, Lockhart Companies Incorporated, together with its subsidiaries, also owns and operates several insurance companies and a financial services company. The outstanding shares of stock of Guardian Insurance Company, Inc. and Heritage Insurance Limited were purchased in 1998.
Founded in 1884 by Alfred H. Lockhart, a progenitor of the current controlling shareholders, the Company was incorporated in 1936. www.lockhart.com