LYNCHBURG (WSLS 10) – River Ridge Mall – Lynchburg’s only indoor shopping mall in 55-mile radius – is for sale.
The listing agent, Gil Neuman of Greysteel, said the property is expected to attract a variety of potential buyers. In a statement, Neuman said more than 89,000 people with an average household income of $50,700 live within five miles of the property. He said the population, as well as the area being well traveled, will make the property attractive to buyers.
Anchor stores like J.C. Pennys, Belk and Macy’s are not part of the sale, Macy’s recently announced a number of stores nationwide would be closing due to under performance. It’s unclear if the River Ridge location will be affected.
Shoppers said they aren’t shocked by the news. Linda Benoit of Lynchburg said shoppers aren’t interested in many of the stores at River Ridge.
“I wasn’t necessarily all that surprised. I don’t think we have a large pool of stores anymore to choose from,” Benoit said.
Others said they travel 55 miles to Valley View Mall in Roanoke, which is owned by the came company – CBL Properties.
Shopper Stephanie Anderson said, “To go shopping, I go to Roanoke or Richmond. If anyone wants to do real shopping they go an hour away.”
A spokesperson for CBL said in a brief statement shoppers can still expect to keep their favorite stores during the sale. Benoit said she hopes the new owners will bring more retailers to Lynchburg.
“Somebody buy it and bring in a lot of the stores that we have to travel for to get to the things that we want,” Benoit said.
“River Ridge maintains historical high occupancy and year-over-year sales growth as the primary and only mall in its wide trade area,” Gil Neuman, Managing Director at Greysteel explained. He added: ”Investors will acquire a well-maintained landmark asset with recent renovations including a new Regal Cinema wing, high-end food court, mall entrances and restrooms and mechanical systems.”
The portions of the mall that are up for sale are 91-percent occupied and include the Regal Cinemas that was built in 2009.
No sale price has been set for the mall. According to city records, it last sold for $60.4 million last time it sold.