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Don't Bet on Caruso's Shops at Santa Anita?

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The Wall Street Journal seems to think developer Rick Caruso's plan for the Shops at Santa Anita Park is on the verge of collapsing. Here's how they put it: "One of the largest retail developments planned in Southern California is on the verge of becoming a casualty in the bankruptcy proceeding of horse-track owner Magna Entertainment Corp.

A unit of Magna Entertainment in 2005 formed a joint venture with real estate investor Rick Caruso to build a roughly 800,000 square-foot retail development near its Santa Anita Park thoroughbred horse racing track in Arcadia, Calif. But the unit earlier this month notified Caruso that it was backing out of the deal, according to court papers. An entity controlled by Caruso has protested the move in a court filing."

As the WSJ notes, the one person that would be happy about this deal not working out would be Westfield Group, owner of the nearby The Promenade at Westfield Santa Anita, and an opponent of the project. Meanwhile, Caruso tell the paper he's sure they'll still do the deal. According to the project's web site, the development, which rise near the historic Santa Anita Park racetrack, would include "825,000 square feet of one-of-a-kind shopping, dining and community space; 24 acres of richly landscaped plazas; and individualized building facades for a refreshing blend of architectural styles."
· Magna Entertainment Backs Out Of California Retail Complex [WSJ]