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Glendale Galleria owners launch major makeover of mall

April 29, 2012|By Roger Vincent
  • The Glendale Galleria update will include reconstruction of the Central Avenue Plaza.
The Glendale Galleria update will include reconstruction of the Central… (Related Cos. )

Owners of the Glendale Galleria have launched a massive makeover intended to update the regional shopping center in downtown Glendale.

Improvements to the 1.5-million-square-foot center will include the previously announced addition of a Bloomingdale’s department store in the space formerly occupied by Mervyns. The Bloomingdale's store is set to open next year.

Other changes intended to update the mall will be the most comprehensive since the mall first opened in 1976 and "nothing short of dramatic," General Manager Larry Martin said.

Among them will be reconstruction of the Central Avenue Plaza, creating an outdoor dining and gathering place and making a more inviting and upscale main entrance from Central Avenue, the street separating the mall from the Americana at Brand shopping center, Martin said.

Inside, brick walls will be re-clad with white stucco to help lighten the interior public spaces. Escalators will be relocated to improve circulation and a new elevator will be installed. Chandeliers will be hung in the court areas. New tile and stone floors are being installed

Restrooms will be renovated and a family restroom, a common amenity at other malls, will be added. Nearly all the work will be done at night to avoid inconveniencing shoppers, Martin said.

He declined to say what the improvements will cost, but public documents filed by the mall’s primary owner, General Growth Properties Inc., say it expects to spend $57.5 million on the project to be completed by fall 2013.

Also at that time, Nordstrom Inc.  is expected to close its department store in the Galleria and open a new store in the Americana. Developer Rick Caruso, who owns the Americana and the Nordstrom building in the Galleria, said he has not decided what store will replace Nordstrom in the Galleria.

"It’s great news that General Growth is going to upgrade the mall," Caruso said of the Galleria makeover. "It’s clearly a result of the success of the Americana."

When Bloomingdale’s and Nordstrom are both open next year, the ability to "cross shop" between the two malls, Caruso said, "will be the best of any region in Southern California."

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