Rouse Co. buys out partner in Paramus Park mall in N.J.

THE BALTIMORE SUN

The Rouse Co. yesterday purchased a half interest in a New Jersey regional mall for more than $50 million, a move that continues the Columbia-based real estate concern's recent efforts to buy out investment partners.

The stake in the Paramus Park Mall from Rodamco N.V., a Dutch investment firm, marks the fourth time this year that Rouse has solidified its ownership of a retail property. With the purchase, a Rouse subsidiary will control the entire 755,000-square-foot mall.

In late June, the company acquired partnership interests in projects in California, Pennsylvania and Texas for roughly $70 million. As part of that transaction, Rouse bought a 30 percent stake in its 1.12 million-square-foot Collin Creek Mall in Plano, Texas, from Rodamco.

"Rodamco was looking to redeploy its capital, and it coincided nicely with our strategic plan for Paramus Park," said Robert Minutoli, a Rouse senior vice president and director of acquisitions.

Paramus Park, completed in 1974 and anchored by Sears, Roebuck & Co. and Macy's, is typically one of the best performers in Rouse's 75-property retail portfolio. The mall is slated to receive up to a $50 million expansion and renovation beginning next year.

Rouse's 279,000 square feet of stores there generate more than $111 million in sales annually.

Rouse said in May that it was preparing to invest $300 million to expand 13 malls in its $4.7 billion portfolio.

"As we've said before, where we can secure partnership interests in malls with good redevelopment or expansion potential at good prices, we'll do it," Mr. Minutoli said.

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