Eastpoint Mall sold for second time in two years
Wednesday, 05 March 2014 12:11

MCB buys site from Jones Lang LaSalle

by Ben Boehl

    Eastpoint Mall has changed owners — again, according to Cecilia H. Stillman, Specialty Leasing Manager at Eastpoint Mall.
    “Eastpoint Mall has changed ownership and management. We have switched over from Jones Lang LaSalle to MCB Real Estate,” Stillman wrote in a broadly-distributed press release that was sent to The Eagle.
    This is the second ownership change in two years and the third in the last eight years for the 57-year-old mall.
    New York-based Thor Equities LLC bought Eastpoint  for $112 million from Chicago-based retail property management services firm Jones Lang LaSalle in 2006.
    After Thor had problems with unresolved debt, Jones Lang LaSalle bought back the 67.2-acre retail site for about $30 million — just over one quarter of its 2006 sale price.
    David Bramble, managing partner at MCB Real Estate LLC, confirmed his company closed the sale on Feb. 18.
    According to the Maryland State Department of Assessments & Taxation, MCB paid $33.4 million for the property.
    Eastpoint began its life as an open-air shopping center in 1956 and was converted into an enclosed mall in 1972.

There have been rumors circulating over the past decade that Eastpoint Mall might suffer the fate of Golden Ring Mall, which closed and was turned into a shopping center in the early 2000s.    
    There have been talks through the years that Eastpoint Mall could be sold, with the property turned into commercial or residential development; however, the mall has consistently survived.
    Bramble said that there are no plans to close the mall. He said his team is looking for sources to provide capital for mall improvements.
    “The mall is in pretty good shape, but there is a lot of work to do to bring [it] back,” Bramble said.
    According to a leasing brochure on the MCB website, Eastpoint has approximately 125 retail spaces with over 60 available openings.
    Bramble said that the mall is 85 percent filled with stores, but there is some retail availability with some current tenants near the end of their leases.   
    “There are a lot of available spaces because of short-term leases,” Bramble explained.
    Thor Equities announced a 15-year extension of Value City Furniture’s lease and the signing of clothier Burlington Coat Factory, department store Shoppers World and shoe retailer DSW to long-term lease agreements in 2010.
    DSW moved into the former Ames location and is still in that spot, but its space is now listed as  “available.”
    It does appear that the Baltimore-based MCB is trying to recruit more tenants, providing leasing information for the mall on its website and listing the property’s status as “stabilized.”
    “We are interested in what is good for the community,” Bramble said. “We are local and want to see a nice product here,” Bramble added.