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Oklahoma City mall is at a crossroads

BY JENNIFER PALMER Modified: January 23, 2009 at 12:54 pm •  Published: January 23, 2009

photo - Crossroads Mall in 2007. PHOTO BY STEVE SISNEY, THE OKLAHOMAN
Crossroads Mall is in foreclosure, and could be put up for bid as early as this spring.

The mall at Interstate 240 and Interstate 35, which lost its remaining two anchor stores this month, is being managed by Price Edwards & Co. while the bank forecloses on the property. Foreclosure will be complete in about 60 days and then the property can be put up for sale, said Jim Parrack, senior vice president for Price Edwards.

Economic conditions, which have forced many retailers into bankruptcy, may make it difficult to sell Crossroads Mall.

"With the economy the way it is, it will be more difficult to market than normal,” Parrack said. Ideally, the buyer would be someone who wants to keep the property as a mall and rejuvenate it, he said.

A new owner could change the purpose of the property after honoring the leases of remaining tenants. Louis Almaraz, a retail specialist with Grubb & Ellis-Levy Beffort, said it is unlikely the property will remain a retail mall.

"I think the future as a traditional mall — it’s going to be very challenging for them,” he said.

A government agency, a school or a medical organization all could potentially utilize the property, he said.

Rick Lahodny, owner of Bonnie’s Popcorn in the mall, said many of the mall’s current tenants have opted not to renew their leases, and instead are leasing month-to-month as they wait to see what happens.

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Crossroads Mall’s history

1974: Crossroads opens as Oklahoma City’s first regional indoor mall. John A. Brown, J.C. Penney, Dillard’s and Montgomery Ward are the anchors.

1985: Brown closes and the space is taken over by another store.

1994: The Macerich Co. buys Crossroads, Jim Swenson is named manager. Non-anchor store occupancy is at 90 percent.

2001: Montgomery Ward files for bankruptcy and closes store. Space is leased to Steve and Barry’s.

2003: The Macerich Co. spends $1 million on renovations, including addition of a carousel and children’s area.

2006: Mall is sold to Midwest Malls.

2007: J.C. Penney closes its Crossroads store and opens stores in nearby Moore and Midwest City.

2008: Macy’s, Dillards and Steve and Barry’s close. Nonanchor store occupancy is at 70 percent.


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