Is Downtown Plaza getting a new owner?
Could this be the week that Sacramento finally gets some good news about Downtown Plaza, the fading shopping mall in the heart of downtown?
Downtown Plaza was a source of pride for Sacramentans when it reopened in 1993 after a $157 million revamp. But subsequent years brought a steady slide as the mall changed hands and tenants such as J. Crew, Ann Taylor, Z Gallerie and Banana Republic left for suburban locales.
City officials have regularly accused mall owner Westfield Group of starving the downtown property while lavishing attention on its Galleria in Roseville. Westfield, in turn, filed a lawsuit challenging the city's approval of large-scale retail development in the downtown railyard.
Last year, Australia-based Westfield put the mall up for sale. On Friday, news swirled around the local real estate community that a buyer been found.
The deal could still fall apart. But real estate sources expressed confidence that a sale to San Francisco's JMA Ventures is imminent. A look at JMA's website suggests it is not a shopping center developer like Westfield. Instead, it focuses on California properties in a variety of sectors from Tahoe resorts to San Francisco hotels.
Mary Lynne Vellinga