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Westfield Buys Macy’s Site at Promenade Mall

Westfield Corp. has purchased the land beneath Macy’s Furniture Gallery at the Westfield Promenade mall – a move that will give the company more options as it seeks to reposition the struggling Woodland Hills mall. The Century City mall developer acquired the 81,100-square-foot parcel near Owensmouth Avenue and Erwin Street from Macy’s Inc. on Jan. 26 for nearly $7.1 million, according to real state data firm CoStar Group Inc. The Cincinnati-based retailer announced in early January that it would close the gallery and a second 189,000-square-foot main store at the mall as part 14 closures of underperforming outlets nationwide. The retailer plans to focus more on online sales. The recent acquisition gives Westfield more control over the 637,000-square-foot mall, except for the multiplex theater owned by AMC Theatres. The theater leases land from EPT Down REIT II Inc., a real estate investment trust in Kansas City, Mo. that owns property under several AMC multiplexes. Retail broker Matthew May, principal of May Realty Advisors in Sherman Oaks, said that the acquisition indicates that Westfield has some plans for the property. “The simplest answer is that Westfield’s acquisition of the Macy’s property is one step forward in an execution of their overall plans for the redevelopment,” he said. “The Macy’s property is a critical component to their plan.” Westfield is currently building the $350 million Village at Topanga, a 550,000-square-foot outdoor mall set to open in the fall that will connect the Promenade and the nearby Westfield Topanga center with shops, restaurants and outdoor amenities such as fire pits, hanging plants and lounge areas. Westfield declined to comment about its acquisition of the Macy’s property beyond a written statement. “Westfield has a strong track record of recovering and reorienting former department store real estate. We view this departure as an opportunity to do so at the Promenade,” said Westfield spokeswoman Katy Dickey in the statement. Moorpark Marriott After years of delays, the city of Moorpark will soon get its very first hotel now that the City Council has approved tweaks to the project. The 108-room Marriott Hotel on a 2.4-acre parcel just east of Highway 23 at 14350 White Sage Road is expected to begin construction this summer. The developer, Premier Hotel Management Inc. in Artesia, will operate the property under a franchise agreement with Marriott International Inc. in Bethesda, Md. “It’s something that we’ve needed for a long time, not just for tourism but for our business community as well,” said Economic Development Manager David Moe. Originally, the development and commercial use permit for the project was approved by the city in May 2007. The plans included a 68,000-square-foot hotel with 112 rooms, an indoor pool and spa, breakfast area and meeting and conference rooms. But when Premier Hotel Management hit a financial snag during the recession and was unable to secure financing for the project, plans were put on hold, Moe said. Now, nearly eight years later, requests for a few modifications were approved by the city, including fewer and some smaller rooms. The hotel will have surface parking with porcelain tile cladding and an architectural roof trellis. It will feature a breakfast area that will accommodate about 40 people, a 360-square-foot exercise room and an outdoor deck area and pool. Developer Peter Bhakta at Premier did not respond to requests for a comment. Valley Appetizers Three new San Jose-based Togo’s Eateries Inc. are coming to the San Fernando Valley this year. Franchise owner Tom Menik is looking to open the sandwich shops in cities such as Glendale, Northridge and Sherman Oaks, among others, and anticipates opening one store by the end of the year. … Marco’s Pizza is expanding into Santa Clarita this month. The Toledo, Ohio fast-casual pizza franchise is owned by Rahman Khandaker, a Hollywood engineer of 20 years. … Gordon Biersch’s Burbank location is getting an upgrade – well, its menu is. The Chattanooga, Tenn.–based brewery restaurant is rolling out a fresh menu with seasonal recipes, beer and cocktail offerings, all starting at its Burbank location. Staff Reporter Champaign Williams can be reached at (818) 316-3121 or cwilliams@sfvbj.com.

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