In 1965, the largely undeveloped northeast corridor was identified by Baltimore County as the preferred site for intensive development. A town center was proposed to be located west of Belair Road at the planned intersection of White Marsh and Walther Boulevards.
From 1972-1981, the planning and development of the White Marsh Mall occurred, with the Rouse Company as owner and developer on land rented from Nottingham. In July 1973, Sears committed as an anchor store. In 1981, most stores opened. In 1992, Hecht's replaced Hutzler's. The White Marsh Mall one of the largest regional malls in the Baltimore area, with five anchor stores and 190 specialty shops in about 1.4 million square feet (130,000 m2). Next to the mall's property is IKEA. This location was the third and currently oldest IKEA store in the United States (1988). The IKEA store is still there today.
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