Westfield America, Inc. completes redevelopment of Westfield shoppingtown independence

04 May 2001

Countries: United States

$55 Million Redevelopment of Wilmington, NC Shoppingtown Opens with 164,000 sf of New Specialty Stores, 400-Seat Food Court, New Dillard’s

Los Angeles, CA, May 4, 2001 – Westfield America, Inc. (NYSE: WEA) today announced the completion and grand opening of Westfield Shoppingtown Independence’s $55 million renovation and expansion program. The redevelopment incorporates a new 160,000 square foot Dillard’s Department Store, which opened on March 21, 2001 as fourth anchor, and the addition of 164,000 square feet of new specialty stores, a grand new food court and a comprehensive renovation of the 22 year-old center.

“We’ve opened on time, and on budget,” said Richard Green, Vice Chairman of Westfield America, Inc. “The redevelopment and remerchandising of this center reflects the Wilmington region’s own substantial growth in the decades since the center’s original opening,” he continued. It was time for Westfield Shoppingtown Independence to grow as well, to meet the needs of our customers and our community. We are very pleased with the result.”

In addition to the new Dillard’s, the expansion lineup also includes many stores that are new to North Carolina including Aeropostale, Charlotte Russe, The Buckle, Ann Taylor Loft, Underground Station, Forever 21 and Hot Topic. Favorites such as Abercrombie & Fitch, Bombay Company, Discovery Channel Store, Sam Goody, KB Toys and Wilsons Leather add to the retail mix.

With emphasis on the rich architectural heritage of the region, the renovated Westfield Shoppingtown Independence features completely new flooring, skylights, entrances, soft seating, and themed end courts, providing a warm, bright and welcoming environment.

Special new shopper amenities included the addition of ‘Westfield Playtown,’ a special interactive play area of soft, foam structures, providing children and parents alike a free, fun play environment. The Shoppingtown also unveiled its new Family Restroom; a facility specifically designed to meet the special needs of mothers and fathers with infants and toddlers in tow.

Westfield Shoppingtown Independence was built in 1979. Westfield America, Inc. purchased the center in 1998. This major renovation and expansion is the first in the center’s history. The 1.1 million square foot renovated and expanded Shoppingtown is the only super-regional mall to serve the greater Wilmington metropolitan area.

Westfield Shoppingtown Independence is owned by Westfield America, Inc. (NYSE: WEA), a real estate investment trust and one of the nation’s leading owners of regional shopping centers. The Company owns interests in 39 major shopping centers, branded as Westfield Shoppingtowns. Westfield Shoppingtowns are home to more than 5,000 specialty stores, serve ten percent of the U.S. population and comprise approximately 37.7 million square feet of leasable space in California, Colorado, Connecticut, Maryland, Missouri, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina and Washington.