Triple Five Group, the developer, owner and manager of West Edmonton Mall, the Mall of America in Bloomington, Minn., and the upcoming American Dream in East Rutherford, N.J., on Monday said it has hired Ty LaRoche, former fashion market editor responsible for women’s ready-to-wear of Neiman Marcus, as creative director of fashion and design.

La Roche will work alongside Ken Downing, Neiman’s former senior vice president and fashion director, who in April became Triple Five Group’s first chief creative officer, at American Dream, where the entertainment portion of the project is expected to open Oct. 25, with retail bowing later.

Is Triple Five raiding the ranks of Neiman Marcus? “No, Triple Five is not at all raiding Neiman’s,” Downing said. “The skill set and talent that the fashion industry brings is one that will really benefit us, not only for American Dream, but existing properties and ones we’ll be developing in the future.”

LaRoche’s responsibilities included setting seasonal trend and style direction, and communicating it to merchant, creative, visual, advertising, public relations and marketing teams; attending major fashion markets and trade fairs, domestically and internationally, and conveying seasonal fashion stories to clients via store fashion presentations.

“Ty understands the history of fashion and has a great intuition for where it’s going,” Downing said. “He has excellent relationships inside and outside the fashion industry. Ty’s understanding of the customer experience is unlike many.

“We’re all working very hard to make an unparalleled project and experience,” said LaRoche, whose responsibilities range across event planning, marketing, tourism, special events and creative. “The day-to-day is different. That’s what attracted me, and the ability to work with Ken again.”

“Ty has his fingers on the pulse of what’s happening,” Downing said. “He’ll be involved in bringing up-and-coming brands and coordinating with the Council of Fashion Designers of America, Fashion Institute of Technology and The New School’s Parsons School of Design, as well as looking for new brands in Detroit and L.A.”

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