Former Barton Creek Square JCPenney’s sells for $13M

More than 144,000 square feet sold at the recently renovated mall

Hilco's Neil Aaronson with Barton Creek Square Mall (Hilco, Google Maps, Getty)
Hilco's Neil Aaronson with Barton Creek Square Mall (Hilco, Google Maps, Getty)

To quote Regina George, “Get in loser, we’re going shopping.”

The company tasked with selling off millions of square feet of JCPenney’s former real estate holdings in Texas and North Carolina has sold the retailer’s slice of the Barton Creek Square Mall in Austin. While the buyer remains unknown, the trust will receive $13.2 million for the 144,000-square-foot slice.

The sale, on Nov. 30, was disclosed in a recent SEC filing. The price works out to $92 per square foot and a 6.55 percent cap rate, the filing shows.

Simon Property Group owns most of the mall, but other retailers, such as Dillard’s and Nordstrom, control pieces, according to property records. JCPenney took title to its parcel in 1979 and held it until its bankruptcy restructuring, which began in May 2020.

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The seller, Copper Property CTL Pass Through Trust, was formed to operate and ultimately dispense with 160 retail properties and 6 distribution centers previously held by the retailer. Its goal is to sell the properties “as promptly as practicable,” and it is operated by Hilco Real Estate. The trust leases the properties to entities owned by Brookfield and Simon.

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Just before the pandemic began, Simon announced it would modernize the mall and add a communal hangout space. Filings at the time suggested the renovations could cost $5.2 million.

As of its last quarterly filing, Copper held 137 retail properties across 36 states and Puerto Rico. All told, the trust controlled 18.1 million square feet of leasable space.

Representatives for Simon and Copper did not respond to requests for comment.