Mall redevelopment clears hurdle

LONGMONT – The legal wrangling is over and work can begin on transforming the beleaguered Twin Peaks Mall into the open-air Village at the Peaks.

Longmont’s elected officials agreed Jan. 21 to pay Dillard’s Inc. $5.5 million for its store and property in Longmont, paving the way for an $80 million redevelopment of the mall as early as Feb. 18.

The Longmont Urban Renewal Authority earlier in January reached an agreement to settle its eminent-domain case against Dillard’s Inc. (NYSE: DDS) for the 94,000-square-foot store and the 7.1 acres around it.

LURA — which is made up of Longmont’s elected city council members — approved measures related to the settlement agreement. The transfer of the Dillard’s title to developer NewMark Merrill Mountain States, a commercial real estate firm based in Fort Collins, is slated to take place on Valentine’s Day — Friday, Feb. 14.

The agreement cancels the need for a jury trial that was scheduled for April that would have determined the price LURA would have had to pay Dillard’s for its store and property in Longmont.
In December, a three-member commission determined a preliminary value of $6.3 million for the Dillard’s store and property, the same amount submitted by Dillard’s appraisers. LURA appraisers had valued the store at $3.03 million.

NewMark Merrill Mountain States will pay $5 million of the total amount, according to the settlement agreement. LURA representatives said the city would pay Dillard’s $500,000 to help the retailer cover its legal costs.

Infrastructure at The Village at the Peaks mall redevelopment project is expected to partially be financed with tax-increment financing. The city has committed $27.5 million from bond proceeds to assist with the project.

Village at the Peaks is a proposed 481,000-square-foot shopping center. It is 50 percent preleased, according to city press release. A Whole Foods Market, a Sam’s Club and a Regal Cinema 12-screen movie theater are planned for the site.

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