The Mall at Turtle Creek in Jonesboro is being sold for $96 million to a publicly traded New York real estate investment trust that owns more than 31 malls across the country.
We don’t know many of the details surrounding the transaction with Rouse Properties Inc. But on Aug. 13, it entered into a contract to buy the 760,000-SF mall on the 73-acre site at Highland Drive and Stadium Boulevard.
The purchase price includes taking over the mall’s $79.5 million mortgage. Rouse has set aside $10 million for a deposit.
Before the deal closed, Rouse planned to complete its due diligence on the property. But it is unclear where that process stands.
A Rouse spokesman declined to comment on the transaction. The manager at Turtle Creek said Thursday that he didn’t know when the mall would be sold. “There’s been several closing dates, but they’re still working it all out as far as the closing dates.”
The manager said he couldn’t say much about the deal and referred calls to an owner, David Hocker & Associates Inc. of Owensboro, Ky. A spokesman for Hocker didn’t immediately return a call for comment.
The Mall, if you recall, was at the center of a legal spat between owners about a year ago.
Developer Bruce Burrow sued his business partner, Hocker, in Craighead County Circuit Court over the management of the mall. Marty Belz of Memphis, a third owner of the Turtle Creek Partners LLC, wasn’t named in the lawsuit.
Burrow filed the lawsuit in October 2011 because he thought Hocker and his company misled him about the financial condition of the mall. Hocker filed a countersuit and wanted Burrow removed as a partner.
The case settled in March. The parties agreed that Hocker & Associates would continue to manage and serve as the leasing agent for the mall while Belz, Burrow and Hocker would continue their roles as co-managers of Turtle Creek Partners LLC. Belz and Burrow also didn’t return calls for comment.
Burrow faced more legal issues a few months after the lawsuit was settled. On July 30, he filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, listing $17.27 million in debts and $14.1 million in assets.
His bankruptcy case is pending.