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SHELLY GARCIA Staff Reporter L.A.-based Westfield America Inc. is in discussions to acquire the Promenade mall in Woodland Hills from Simon DeBartolo Group Inc. No one involved in the deal is talking publicly, but privately, sources say Westfield has been interested in the property for a long time, and was a bidder for it along with Simon DeBartolo. “Westfield went after all the properties and Simon DeBartolo paid more money,” said a source close to the negotiations. Indianapolis-based Simon DeBartolo acquired the Promenade late last year as part of a portfolio of 10 properties it bought from Retail Property Trust, a private real estate investment trust in New York, according to Billie Scott, a spokeswoman for Simon DeBartolo. “We don’t comment until a transaction closes,” she said of the reports that the Promenade was being sold to Westfield. Sources said Simon DeBartolo was not looking to sell when it bought the Promenade. Since then, the company has implemented several marketing programs. “They carried it forward as if their intention was to maintain the property,” a source said. Business at the Promenade has been relatively flat, according to sources, but the opportunity to increase sales would be greater under Westfield’s ownership because the publicly traded REIT already owns the adjacent Topanga Plaza Mall. Competition between the two malls has hurt business for both, observers said. At the same time, regional shopping centers have become a hot commodity. Whereas prices in the rest of the commercial real estate market are rising, regional mall prices are in a slump, and investors, particularly REITs, see them as bargain acquisitions, analysts say. “There have been a lot of changes in the shopping-center industry, in general,” said an analyst. “There’s been a lot of trading.” Designs for Glendale Fashion Center The developers of the Glendale Fashion Center have selected Perkowitz+Ruth of Long Beach as the executive architects for the $60 million center. Officials with Vestar Development Co., the Phoenix-based developers, said the center is 87 percent leased and scheduled to open in the summer of 1999. Anchor tenants so far include Long’s Drug Stores, Staples, Barnes & Noble, Ross Dress For Less, Petco, Sports Authority and Michael’s, along with a major supermarket. Perkowitz+Ruth is also the architect for Vestar’s planned 103-acre Empire Center in Burbank. Nadel Architects Inc. in Los Angeles is the design architect. Boeing signs on at West Hills Boeing Co. has closed on a lease for 123,000 square feet of space in the West Hills Corporate Center under development by Beverly Hills-based Regent Properties Inc. The space will be an addition to the facilities Boeing’s divisions already occupy in Westlake Village, Canoga Park and the Santa Susanna mountains. The first building on the 30-acre West Hills site is scheduled for completion in September. Regent is beginning construction on two more of five buildings planned for the office park. News and notes Westrust Financial sold the 94,000-square-foot Occidental Business Park on Topanga Canyon Boulevard in Chatsworth for $7.5 million. The four-building park is fully leased; the lead tenant is Software Dynamics. Mark Leonard and Theresa Dunn of Charles Dunn Co. represented the seller. DCI Investments represented the buyer, Holualoa Arizona. Wexler Video has purchased a 10,000-square-foot building in Burbank from Baskin & Robbins. The building, at 1021-31 North Victory Blvd., will be used for equipment storage facilities for the video and editing equipment rental firm. David Parker of Charles Dunn represented Wexler in the $600,000 transaction and Dave Harding and Barbara Emmons of CB Richard Ellis in Glendale represented Baskin & Robbins. GMC Sales Corp. has signed a lease for 19,200 square feet of industrial space at a Donald Marks Development complex at 13333 Sherman Way. Sue Horowitz of Capital Commercial/NAI represented GMC; William Kogel of Told Partners Inc. represented Donald Marks. Stonecastle Financial, a mortgage company specializing in home financing, is relocating its corporate offices and doubling its space in Sherman Oaks. The company, which is moving from Encino, has leased a 16,500-square-foot space on the second floor of 4312 Woodman Ave., a building owned by Michael L. Malmut. The lease is valued at more than $574,000, according to Cathy Scullin and Chad Gahr, Capital Commercial/NAI brokers who represented Stonecastle. Le Courier Inc., a delivery service specializing in work with entertainment studios, has leased a freestanding commercial building in Burbank. The 6,200-square-foot commercial building, located at 2107 West Alameda Ave., leased for $540,000. Stacy Vierheilig-Fraser and Bob Harrison of the Charles Dunn Co. represented all parties in the transaction. Cal State trustees have approved the plan to construct a biomedical complex on the North Campus of Cal State Northridge. The complex will house MiniMed Inc., a leading biomedical company owned by philanthropist Alfred Mann. MiniMed is currently located in Sylmar. Groundbreaking for the complex is expected to begin next month. A football stadium, originally slated to be built elsewhere on the CSUN campus, was not included in the plan after residents complained about potential traffic problems. The stadium that currently stands on the North Campus will be torn down. University officials said they plan to rework the stadium proposal and present it at a later date.

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