Westfield Trumbull mall sold along with New York shopping center

Exiting the 2022 holiday shopping season, Westfield Trumbull has been sold along with a Long Island, NY mall, for $196 million.

Located on 78 acres north of the Bridgeport-Trumbull line just off the Merritt Parkway, the Westfield Trumbull has an 85 percent occupancy rate. Anchor tenants include JCPenney, Macy’s and Target, although the mall lost another two years ago with the closure of Lord & Taylor.

At just over 1.1 million square feet of total space, Westfield Trumbull is the fifth largest mall in Connecticut after the Connecticut Post Mall in Milford, Danbury Fair, Westfarms in Farmington and Brass Mill Center in Waterbury.

Prior owner Unibail-Rodamco-Westfield had been dangling Westfield Trumbull and other US malls to buyers, as the real estate giant reduces debt it is carrying. In May 2022, the Fitch Ratings subsidiary of Hearst Corp. projected a loss of at least 30 percent on aa $118 million loan secured by the property.

A URW spokesperson did not provide the identity of the buyer in response to a CT Insider query. URW had yet to remove its corporate logo and contact information from the Westfield Trumbull website as of Tuesday morning, but the company no longer lists it among its malls globally.

Trumbull’s first selectman told CT Insider that town officials were in the process of gathering information on the details of the sale.

“We had absolutely no knowledge of this sale,” said Vicki Tesoro, first selectman for the town of Trumbull. “We knew it was for sale but we had no idea [a] sale was done.”

Trumbull is in line for hundreds of thousands of dollars on the sale, via a conveyance tax equal to a quarter of 1 percent of the purchase price. The town last appraised the mall at $153 million, not including the department store anchor pads and an outbuilding for LA. Fitness that tacked on another $31.6 million to the larger property at 5065 Main St.

The mall’s sale would also generate conveyance taxes for the state of Connecticut, at 1.25 percent of the purchase price.

The Westfield Group, an Australia-based predecessor company of Paris-based URW, purchased Westfield Trumbull in 1977 as its first US real estate buy, 13 years after the mall opened.

Under URW, Westfield Trumbull had aggressively sought to expand its appeal to draw more foot traffic, to include adding a commercial aquarium and an adjacent apartment complex now under construction.

Amanda Cuda and Luther Turmelle contributed to this report. Includes prior reporting by Donald Eng, Eddy Martinez and Paul Schott.

Alex.Soule@scni.com; @casoulman

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