What detail hasn't been argued over at Monterey Park's Atlantic Times Square, aka the Times Square of the San Gabriel Valley? Now it's the quality of the stores and restaurants being brought in to fill the project's 205,000 square feet of retail space. Developer Kam Sang's contract with the city guarantees that 51% of that space be filled with national chains, according to the San Gabriel Valley Tribune, but the city says it's primarily brought in small, regional franchises so far, which, says a city councilmember, "don't bring us the sales tax we want." A 30,842 square foot 24 Hour Fitness opened at the site in May, and the developer says a 75,000 square foot AMC theater will open this month. National chains Johnny Rockets, Lee's Sandwiches, Yogen Fruz, Cold Stone Creamery, Aji Ichiban, and Ten Ren Tea Time will take up another 10,000 square feet.
The city is now playing nice in hopes the developer will bring in more big retailers. It's dropped breach of contract notices, including one related to Monterey Park's mayor brokering a lease for some of that Atlantic Times Square retail space. (That particular conflict of interest sure seems like it could solve everyone's problems!) The city has already given Kam Sang zoning density breaks and financial assistance in exchange for the national chains promise. Big or small, stores start opening this month and will all be open by early November.
· Monterey Park seeks to mend bridges with project developer, attract national stores [SGVT]