Shopping malls in urban L.A. see revival
Many Southern California malls in urban settings have managed to thrive in spite of the recession.
Real estate broker Richard Rizika, who specializes in retail properties, said malls are faring much better in Los Angeles County than in the nation on average.
The amount of empty space in L.A. County shopping centers and large free-standing stores fell as much as 25% last year compared with 2009, he said, and rents rose almost 10%. Nationally, vacancy fell only 1% and rents went down 5%. Many chain stores have closed outlets in remote suburban malls to focus instead on busy urban centers.
-- Roger Vincent
Photo: A major renovation of the Westfield Culver City mall that added floor space and upscale stores -- and replaced the venerable food court with a "dining terrace" -- has been a financial boon, a Westfield executive said. Credit: Ricardo DeAratanha /Los Angeles Times