Nuveen Real Estate, Taconic Partners and North American Properties acquired a shopping center in Yonkers for $220 million, one of the largest retail acquisitions to close in the past year.
Ridge Hill is a 74-acre property the partners plan to rebrand and transform the into an outdoor lifestyle center serving the tri-state area.
The renovations are slated to include adjustments to Ridge Hill’s public spaces, street design and parking amenities. The partners said they also plan to attract local food and beverage concepts, along with national luxury apparel and boutique fitness providers.
Developed in 2011, Ridge Hill’s retailers include Apple, Banana Republic, Sephora, H&M, the Container Store and Uniqlo. The center is also home to Legoland Discovery Center, a 12-screen National Amusements Showcase Cinema de Lux, Whole Food, LA Fitness and several full-service restaurants.
While traditional shopping malls have struggled in recent years, outdoor lifestyle centers have attracted more foot traffic, particularly in the wake of the pandemic.
The top 20 lifestyle centers in the highest population U.S. markets reported nearly 8.1 million visits in August 2021, compared with 1.3 million visits in April 2020. In 2021’s second quarter, lifestyle centers drew 46 percent higher rents than regional malls and 11.5 percent higher rents than super regional malls, according to JLL.
As a part of the partnership, North American Properties will begin operations and repositioning of the property in May 2022. The developer has worked on similar projects in other states, including Georgia, North Carolina and Kentucky.
Nuveen Real Estate and Taconic have been collaborators since 2015, collectively investing more than $2 billion across over 2 million square feet in New York. The partners completed a $260 million fundraising round for their jointly sponsored value-add New York City Property Fund II in 2021.