PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — Lloyd Center Management announced Monday new owners and a new operator will be taking over the mall.
Urban Renaissance Group has partnered with KKR Real Estate to begin “revitalization” plans for the site.
URG is a full-service real estate company with offices in Portland, Seattle and Denver. The company specializes in reimagining, developing and managing commercial real estate and has previously worked on the Canvas office building next to Providence Park and the renovation of the former Oregonian newspaper headquarters.
A press release issued Monday morning said the Lloyd Center and its approximately 100 shops and businesses will remain fully open under the new ownership.
The exact future of the Lloyd Center is still uncertain, but the new owners of the mall said they know how much this place means to people.
“This is an amazing opportunity to invest in the heart of our city and we believe there is great potential for this uniquely situated property,” Tom Kilbane, URG’s Portland managing director, said in a statement. “We know many Oregonians have fond memories of Lloyd Center and we take seriously our responsibility for making sure it continues to be a community gathering place.”
Kilbane said UGR’s goal is to preserve features of the property that make it special, including retail, creative work spaces and ice skating.
When the Lloyd Center opened in 1960, it was called the largest open-air shopping mall in the nation with more than 100 stores.
However, the mall has been struggling for years with many storefronts sitting empty including Nordstrom and Sears which left years ago and Macy’s which closed in January.
People KOIN 6 News spoke with hope the new owners will bring this place back to what it once was.
“I would like to see more people here so that it feels safer here. I’d be for it, I don’t know how they’re going to do it though,” Chris Loper, who lives near Lloyd Center, said.
It was previously reported the mall was being foreclosed due to the previous owners missing payments for a 2015 renovation plan loan.
KKR Real Estate Finance Trust said in November they planned to take ownership of the mall by the end of 2021 and were seeking partners to assist in redevelopment plans.
URG said it plans to listen to existing tenants, neighbors, the broader community and city officials as it decides what the future of the Lloyd Center will look like.
The company said they’re seeking the public’s opinions to determine what’s in store for the mall.
So far there is no timeline for when to expect changes at the mall. For now, the mall remains open for holiday shopping.