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Alexandria Officials Expect Howard Hughes Will Sell Landmark Mall Site To Another Developer

The shuttered Macy's at Alexandria's Landmark Mall

The real estate firm planning to redevelop the mostly shuttered Landmark Mall in Alexandria may be backing out of the project.

Alexandria City Councilman Canek Aguirre informed a civic group last month that Howard Hughes Corp. no longer has interest in the redevelopment project, ALXnow reports. Aguirre's comments were first reported by Alexandria Living Magazine

Alexandria Communications Director Craig Fifer, in a statement provided to Bisnow, said recent circumstances lead city staff to believe Howard Hughes will likely sell the site. He pointed to Howard Hughes' restructuring last year, during which it didn't include Landmark Mall on its sell list, but also didn't commit to developing it. The developer has also not closed on its partnership agreement with Seritage, which owns a portion of the site, Fifer said.

Additionally, Howard Hughes eliminated the position of senior vice president that was in charge of the Landmark Mall redevelopment, Fifer said. Mark Bulmash, who held that position, is no longer with the company, according to his automatic email response. 

"City staff's conclusion from these actions and inactions is that Howard Hughes is likely to sell Landmark to another investor or developer," Fifer said. "The city is committed to the redevelopment potential of the Landmark Mall site, and remains ready to work with a qualified developer or investor in transforming this site into a vibrant mixed-use community for the city's West End and beyond."

Fifer deferred to the company to confirm or deny the city's conclusion. Howard Hughes didn't respond to requests for comment Monday. Bulmash told Bisnow in August the developer was still moving forward with the project and was focusing on receiving the approvals for Phase 1. 

The project's first phase has been planned to include 1.5M to 2M SF of development featuring a potential mix of residential, retail, hotel, office and other public facilities. The land-use plan Alexandria City Council adopted last year envisions 5.6M SF of overall development for the 51-acre Landmark Mall site.