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Gettin' bigger and better for California mall Construction is set to start on a 150,000 sq. ft. entertainment addition to the 39-year old, 1 million sq. ft. Beuna Park Mall in Orange County, Calif. Less than two months after opening an Old Navy and Bed, Bath & Beyond, the newly redeveloped mall is going to be the recipient of The District. The multi-million dollar expansion is expected to start this spring, with an anticipated opening scheduled for the summer of 2002.

The entertainment venue will include a 90,000 sq. ft. open-air entertainment complex that will feature a state-of-the-art, 18-screen Krikorian Premiere Theatres, which will offer patrons wall-to-wall screens and stadium-style seating. Themed restaurants, specialty retailers and entertainment attractions will complete the additional 60,000 sq. ft.

Beuna Park Mall is Orange County's oldest regional mall and features a Sears, Ross Dress for Less and Burlington Coat Factory, plus other specialty stores. The mall is located at the corner of Stanton and La Palma avenues, which is adjacent to Knott's Berry Farm and just a few miles from Disneyland.

One mall goes down, another one goes up With the demolition complete, construction has now begun on a new mixed-use development on the site of the former Long Beach Plaza. Led by Long Beach Mayor Beverly O'Neill, city leaders joined mall officials in tearing down a mock wall at the old plaza and unveiled the name of the development that will rise in its place. CityPlace will be an urban village development located in downtown Long Beach, Calif. Doors are expected to open in the spring of 2002.

Cleveland-based Developers Diversified Realty Corp. (DDR) is developing the project. Upon completion, CityPlace will offer patrons approximately 475,000 sq. ft. of retail space, 328 residential units (258 rental and 70 loft condominiums), a 138-room suites hotel and 2,900 parking spaces.

CityPlace will cover eight city blocks that were occupied by Long Beach Plaza and city-owned land. Two streets the former mall engulfed will be returned to the original city grid, creating a pedestrian-oriented shopping block that will feature a lively street scene.

DDR already has lined up tenant agreements with Wal-Mart, Sav-on and Albertson's to open stores at CityPlace. Wal-Mart has modified its prototypical building to include a corner entrance, mock display windows and an art deco facade. Jerde Partnership of Venice, Calif., designed the future mixed-use project.

Nordstrom pulls out of two future downtown projects Seattle specialty retailer Nordstrom had decided to postpone the development of two proposed downtown stores in Cincinnati and Pittsburgh for at least a year, although city officials believe the stores will never be built. Nordstrom, which appointed a new CEO and upper management staff in August of 2000, says that the retailer prefers to focus on improving its existing stores, and the two future projects don't add into the equation.

"[CEO] Blake Nordstrom and his management team have been reviewing the company's strategy, including real estate, and felt that downtown Cincinnati and Pittsburgh were two projects that didn't make sense," says Paula Weigand, a spokeswoman for the retailer.

Nordstrom was a critical part of the $522 million citywide revitalization plan by Pittsburgh Mayor Tom Murphy and Chicago-based Urban Retail Properties. The project proposed by Murphy included the razing of more than 60 buildings and the removal of some 125 businesses to make way for the new upscale shopping and entertainment venue. Pittsburgh's City Council is now considering an alternative "Main Street" project that will bring in new businesses without tearing down the old facades or kicking out merchants that want to stay. The city has already agreed to a $28 million financing package that will bring in retailer Lord & Taylor.

Cincinnati originally planned a $48.7 million deal to build a department store on prime city-owned downtown property. Eagle Realty Group, which signed a letter of intent with Nordstrom to develop the store, says it will continue to pursue developing the site for another store.

Pre-birthday party for future suburban Atlanta mall Cake was served and local bands played on as a pre-birthday party bash was held to begin the countdown of another future Atlanta mall.

Cleveland's Cadillac Fairview and Forest City Enterprises Inc. celebrated the one year countdown to the opening of the 1.3 million sq. ft. Mall at Stonecrest located in Rockdale County, 45 minutes east of Atlanta. Doors are scheduled to open in the fall of 2001.

More than 40 tenants, including five anchor stores, have been announced. The anchor stores are Rich's, Sears, JCPenney, Parisian and Dillard's. The mall is 70% preleased with less than a year to go before opening. The mall will feature a multi-screen, stadium-seating theater and 120 retail shops in a two-level format.

Westfield begins redevelopment of several properties nationwide Los Angeles-based Westfield America Inc. is redeveloping several of its properties across the United States. San Jose, Calif.'s Westfield Shoppingtown Valley Fair is undergoing a $165 million redevelopment. Two new parking structures are already open and a new, 225,000 sq. ft. Nordstrom is under construction, with a planned opening of spring 2001. New and reconfigured shops at Valley Fair totaling 320,000 sq. ft. will open in two phases. Phase I will open with Nordstrom. Phase II, the reconfiguration of the existing Nordstrom building into mall shops, is planned for completion in spring 2002.

Westfield Shoppingtown West County in St. Louis recently commenced its $232 million redevelopment. The center's new Famous-Barr flagship is under construction, and the existing center has ceased trading and will be demolished this month. Upon its scheduled fall 2002 completion, West County will have more than 1.2 million sq. ft. of retail, including the city's only Nordstrom, a flagship Lord & Taylor and a renovated JCPenney.

Also, Woodland Hills, Calif.'s Westfield Shoppingtown Promenade will undergo a $35 million transformation into an entertainment center featuring a redesigned lower level plus five new destination tenants and restaurants. Promenade's second level will be redesigned and remerchandized to complement the new lower level tenants and the existing, highly successful AMC Theatre. Upon completion in spring 2001, the new entertainment venues are expected to establish the center as a leading lifestyle and entertainment destination in the West San Fernando Valley.

Redevelopment of Birmingham mall brings two developers together CBL & Associates Properties, Chattanooga, Tenn. and Colonial Properties Trust, Birmingham, Ala., are joint-venture partners in the expansion and redevelopment of Parkway City Mall. By fall 2002 the mall will become a two-level, 650,000 sq. ft. center called Parkway Place.

Redevelopment plans include the demolition of the mall's existing Montgomery Ward and the addition of a 167,000 sq. ft. Parisian, a 180,000sq. ft. Dillard's and 275,000 sq. ft. of new mall shops. CBL will be responsible for management and development of Parkway Place, while Colonial Properties Trust will handle leasing. Cleveland-based KA Inc. serves as architect for the project.

Yachting center to be transformed into mixed-use Cypress Plaza Shopping Center is being demolished and redeveloped into a mixed-use project by Miami-based J.H. International Corp. The under-performing center had recently undergone an unsuccessful incarnation as a 300,000 sq. ft. yachting center, but market research has indicated that a luxury residential project would fare better.

The proposed redevelopment plan features 75,000 to 100,000 sq. ft. of streetscape retail overlooking a town square and lake. The center's residential component will include 360 upscale town homes as well as a club house, pools, tennis courts and other recreational areas.

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