Lenders buy back former Boscov's buildings

Spaces had been vacant since department store shut down local outlets two years ago

September 13, 2010|By Andrea K. Walker, The Baltimore Sun

Three vacant, mall anchor spots once home to Boscov's department stores were bought back by lenders in a foreclosure sale Monday after no one showed interest in the properties at auction.

Alex Cooper Auctioneers held an auction to sell off the former department store buildings at White Marsh Mall and Owings Mill Mall in Baltimore County and Marley Station in Glen Burnie.

The auction of the properties could have opened the door for new owners to come in and improve the properties and find new tenants.

Instead, three corporate entities created by lenders on the properties bought the spaces when no one else showed up at the auction. Attorneys for the lenders had no comment about the sales.

An entity named White Marsh Holdings LLC bought the space at that mall for $7.5 million, while Owings Mills Holdings LLC paid $2.8 million for that property. Marley Holdings LLC bought the Anne Arundel County mall space for $3 million.

The anchor spaces have been vacant since Boscov's moved out nearly two years ago after filing for bankruptcy-law protection. The Pennsylvania-based retail chain had expanded aggressively into the Baltimore market, taking advantage of properties left vacant when Federated Department Stores bought May Co. for $12 billion in 2006.

The housing industry collapse and recession hit before the new stores were ever able to turn a profit.

Boscov's still has stores in Westminster and Salisbury.

Teen clothing retailer Forever 21 is still scheduled to move into the former Boscov's building at White Marsh. It is currently elsewhere in the mall.

Towson Commons, an office and retail complex, also is scheduled to be sold at auction this month.

andrea.walker@baltsun.com

twitter.com/ankwalker

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