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Retail News

Koury Corp. renovates interior of Four Seasons Town Centre Four Seasons Town Centre's developer, owner and manager, Koury Corp., has commissioned Atlanta-based architectural and interior design firm Thompson, Ventulette, Stainback & Associates to totally renovate the 1.1 million sq. ft. super-regional mall. The Greensboro, N.C., center's new look will be complete by this holiday season.

Developers Diversified Realty, OliverMcMillan form new REIT Forming a new private REIT, Cleveland, Ohio-based Developers Diversified Realty Corp. and San Diego-based OliverMcMillan LLC have formed DDR OliverMcMillan (DDROM) to develop, acquire, operate and manage urban entertainment and retail projects throughout the United States. Representative of the initial investments by DDROM is the company's 494,000 gross sq. ft. urban waterfront project, Queensway Bay in Long Beach, Calif.

New Plan, Excel to create $3.5 billion retail REIT Creating the largest community and neighborhood shopping center REIT, with $3.5 billion total market capitalization, New York-based New Plan Realty Trust and San Diego-based Excel Realty Trust Inc. have signed a definitive merger agreement. The new company, to be called New Plan Excel Realty Trust Inc., will own a total of 276 retail properties in 32 states, comprising more than 34.7 million sq. ft. The transaction is expected to close in August.

ERE Yarmouth's VEF II acquires Weston Retail portfolio For $79 million, Atlanta-based ERE Yarmouth Inc.'s Value Enhancement Fund II has acquired the Weston Retail portfolio, which consists of five existing community shopping centers totaling 690,465 sq. ft. and one 160,040 sq. ft. center under construction.

Also, ERE Yarmouth has won the property management and leasing duties for The Shops at Tabor Center, a 110,860 sq. ft. center in Denver.

Colonial Properties Trust adds 1.1 million sq. ft. to portfolio Expanding its retail holdings in the Orlando, Fla., market, Birmingham, Ala.-based Colonial Properties Trust has purchased the 1.1 million sq. ft. Orlando Fashion Square from Fund A Orlando Inc. for $104 million. Orlando Fashion Square is a Class-A super-regional retail center anchored by Burdine's, Sears, Gayfers, JCPenney and General Cinemas, and it generates an average of $329 per sq. ft. in sales.

Vestar Development builds 850,000 sq. ft. retail center Signing a long-term ground lease for 102 acres in Long Beach, Calif., Phoenix-based retail developer Vestar Development Co. plans to build an 850,000 sq. ft. center on the site. Valued at approximately $150 million, the Long Beach Towne Center project is expected to be completed by October or November. Grubb & Ellis represented Vestar in the transaction.

Prime Retail breaks ground on Puerto Rico's first outlet center Representing Baltimore-based outlet center developer and owner's first project outside the continental United States, Prime Retail broke ground on the first outlet center in Puerto Rico. Located in Barceloneta, Prime Outlets of Puerto Rick will open in May of next year. Upon completion, the center and adjacent outparcels will total 425,000 sq. ft. and will feature more than 100 designer and specialty outlet shops. Total investment for the project is expected to be between $50 million and $60 million.

The Great Mall of the Bay Area has sold for more than $130 million.

As you may well know, one of the biggest trends in retail as of late is making old projects new again. Well there's no better example of this than what is currently happening in the Greater Chicago area.

In three separate projects, Chicago has plans to revitalize the landmark Century Shopping Centre, redevelop One Schaumburg Place and create a neighborhood "main street" out of the vacant R.R. Donnelley & Sons building.

Chicago-based Hiffman Shaffer Associates Inc., owner of The Century Shopping Centre, in collaboration with Highland Park, Ill.-based Lake Shore Development Corp., has completed a deal with Los Angeles-based Landmark Theatre Corp. to open a new first-run art cinema complex in the upper levels of the the center in the fall of 1999. The redevelopment will include renovating the mall's interior and remerchandising the center towards a more upscale retail mix.

And the former One Schaumburg Place is to be turned inside out by Chicago developer Dan McCaffery, president of CCR McCaffery Developments, and partner City Center Retail Trust to create The Streets of Woodfield. The Streets of Woodfield is being developed as an urban, two-story streetside center with new shops, restaurants and entertainment venues that face outward with individual storefronts. This 650,000 sq. ft. redevelopment will also include bringing in a new mix of sophisticated retailers and creating an urban environment - with storefronts on city streets, sidewalks, street lamps and benches - out of an inward-focused mall, says McCaffery.

Finally, plans are being presented to the city's Planning Commission by Portland, Maine-based Landmark America to convert the R.R. Donnelley & Sons building into a pedestrian-oriented neighborhood hub. The more than 3 million sq. ft. redevelopment will transform the property from vacant warehouses to a local neighborhood "main street," with upscale retail shops, restaurants, office space, a hotel, a health club, entertainment venues and loft-style apartments.

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