Westfield said today it has agreed to buy the remaining stake in the World Trade Center retail premises for $800 million. When the deal is complete, Westfield will own the entire project.
Westfield paid the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey $612.5 million for its 50 percent stake. Westfield entered into a joint venture to own and operate the retail space at the World Trade Center site in May 2012.
Westfield has been guiding the World Trade Center’s 440,000 square feet of retail space. “Since 2001, Westfield has believed in and remained committed to investing in this site and in this city,” said Peter Lowy, Westfield Group chief executive officer. “We take great pride and pleasure in amplifying that commitment today.”
Lowy said that Westfield will continue to work in close collaboration with the Port Authority for the successful realization of the overall project, which is expected to open in 2015. While no tenants have been revealed, Westfield and the Port Authority unveiled in October the West Concourse, which provides a pedestrian link between the World Trade Center site; Brookfield Place, formerly the World Financial Center, and the New York Waterway Ferry Terminal. Westfield’s investment of more than $1.4 billion represents the largest private sector investment at the site.
In other news, the Australian shopping mall developer said that it is planning to split its domestic and international operations, which will be merged with Westfield Retail Trust to form a new company.
Westfield is the world’s largest mall operator by market value.