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Suburban shopping mall owner throws in the towel

(Credit: Pixabay, Google Maps)

The owner of the Centerpointe of Woodridge shopping center turned the property over to its lender, unable to weather the loss of two big-box tenants.

The investor group organized by former Phoenix-based real estate firm Cole Capital had been trying to negotiate a deal on the $29.4 million mortgage until it decided just to relinquish ownership through a deed-in-lieu of foreclosure, according to Crain’s.

The 466,000-square-foot property at 75th Street and Woodward Avenue in west suburban Woodridge is now half occupied after losing a 104,000-square-foot JCPenney and a 140,000-square-foot Sam’s Club last year.

New York-based servicer Torchlight Loan Services is overseeing the Centerpointe loan on behalf of investors who own commercial mortgage-backed securities secured by the loan.

The shopping center, which still includes a 111,000-square-foot Home Depot, was appraised in August at $18.8 million, down from $45.6 million in 2007 and well below the $29.4 million owed on it, a Bloomberg loan report said.

The loss of big box anchors due to corporate bankruptcies and liquidations, including Carson’s and Toys “R” Us has put a strain on mall landlords, who now have the added worry of a Sears bankruptcy filing and its possible effects on the chain’s 900 remaining stores.

A CBRE report earlier this year showed Chicago-area retail vacancies surge to their highest point since 2010, though recent reports from Marcus & Millichap and Newmark Knight Frank painted a diifferent picture, with both putting the overall retail vacancy rate at less than 6.5 percent. [Crain’s] — John O’Brien

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