I mentioned recently that we're seeing an uptick in construction projects in the area. And, this is the granddaddy of 'em all: a $315 million upscale mall, called University Town Center, which is getting a lot of attention. (Construction was supposed to start during the recession, but was postponed for years…then, the plans were modified to accommodate different anchor stores.) Last week, I noticed the Macy's sign was installed and lit up -- and the mall isn't scheduled to open for another five months (on my birthday, to be exact!). Today, Crate & Barrel announced it will be a tenant. Another big name -- Apple -- also is moving in, which will be nice for me because my drive time to an Apple store will be cut by one hour. Many people are concerned about the increased traffic the mall will generate. I live nearby and I'm not overly concerned. Yet. (You can't tell from this photo, but the mall is going to be quite large.) Others fear the new mall might prompt shoppers to abandon the retail stores in downtown Sarasota and St. Armands Circle. But, isn't a mall experience much different than being out and about in a bustling downtown? By the way, for those keeping track, this reportedly will be the only new mall to open in the U.S. in 2014.