By  on September 21, 2005

NEW YORK — William Taubman, chief operating officer of Taubman Centers Inc., expects to sign leases with "all the major luxury suspects" by the time Project CityCenter, MGM/Mirage's $5 billion vertical city, opens in Las Vegas in 2009.

Taubman, who was hired to oversee the retail component of the project, said there will be 100 names or more on the store roster.

"We've come up with a plan that allows us to give the major international brands street frontage and brand identity similar to what they get on the Ginza in Tokyo and New York's Fifth Avenue," he said. "That will be a unique point of difference with every other property in town."

Project CityCenter is starting life with a formidable pedigree: architects such as Cesar Pelli, Rafael Viñoly, Sir Norman Foster, James KM Cheng and Kohn Pedersen Fox Associates are attached to the project.

With a 60-story, 4,000-room hotel-casino; two 400-room, nongaming hotels; 500,000 square feet of retail shops; dining and entertainment venues, and 1,640 units of luxury condos, it's being touted as the largest privately financed development in the U.S.

"We will build multilevel, 20,000- to 30,000-square-foot flagships," Taubman said.

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