Meadowlands Xanadu Project Starts Construction After Receiving NJSEA Board Approval, Final Permit; Developer to Transfer 587-Acre Empire Tract for Preservation
03/21/2005 Category: Leasing and Development
ARLINGTON, Va.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--March 21, 2005--The Mills Corporation (NYSE:MLS) and Mack-Cali Realty Corporation (NYSE:
CLI) announced that construction begins today on Meadowlands Xanadu after receiving approvals from the New Jersey Sports and
Exposition Authority and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.
Construction of the entertainment and shopping portion of Meadowlands Xanadu, the 4.8 million-square-foot family entertainment, sports, retail, office and hotel complex, commenced this morning with site preparation for the driving of piles for a parking garage and is planned to open in late 2007. Meadowlands Xanadu will be located at the Meadowlands Sports Complex in Bergen County, New Jersey, within five miles of Manhattan.
Issuance of the Army Corps of Engineers permit also allows commencement of fill work, which triggers transfer of the 587-acre Empire Tract, the largest remaining contiguous open-space wetlands parcel in the Meadowlands, for conveyance to the State of New Jersey's Meadowlands Conservation Trust under deed restrictions to be approved by the Army Corps of Engineers and the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection. The conservation organization will oversee preservation and wildlife management of the Empire Tract.
The permit also triggers the immediate payment of $869,000 to the New Jersey Meadowlands Commission for the purpose of the mitigation of 15.3 acres for the Secaucus High School Wetlands Enhancement Site.
"The Mills Corporation is proud to play a key role in two historic events for the state of New Jersey: the revitalization of the Meadowlands Sports Complex and the protection of the vast Empire Tract," said Laurence C. Siegel, chairman and CEO of The Mills Corporation. "I am pleased to say that with the final permit in hand, we now can bring to life Meadowlands Xanadu's unique blend of new concepts in interactive entertainment, dining, retail and night life, and simultaneously ensure that for generations to come, visitors to the Meadowlands will be able to enjoy the pristine beauty of the incomparable natural resource known as the Empire Tract."
Meadowlands Xanadu will create more than 20,000 jobs during construction and more than 20,000 permanent full- and part- time jobs upon completion. In addition, the developers of Meadowlands Xanadu have committed to spend tens of millions of dollars for road and other infrastructure improvements.
"We at Mack-Cali Realty Corporation look forward to attracting leading businesses to Meadowlands Xanadu through our development of prime office and hotel space," said Mitchell E. Hersh, President and Chief Executive Officer of Mack-Cali. "With the addition of Meadowlands Xanadu, the Meadowlands Sports Complex will become a premier address for businesses."
"To guarantee in perpetuity the protection of a natural resource as vast and important as the Empire Tract is truly a remarkable feat," said Capt. Bill Sheehan, Hackensack Riverkeeper. "No less remarkable is the story of how former adversaries came together to convey this natural treasure to the people of New Jersey and their future."
KanAm, The Mills Corporation's financial partner for Meadowlands Xanadu, has completed its $250 million funding for the project. "This was the most successful raise in our history. We are very confident in the success of Meadowlands Xanadu," said James C. Braithwaite, President and CEO, KanAm U.S., Inc. "The enthusiasm demonstrated by our investors also is a testament to their confidence that the project will be a great success."
Tenancies for nearly half the entertainment and retail space at Meadowlands Xanadu already have been identified, including the country's first indoor ski resort, an indoor Formula One-inspired go-kart track and simulated skydiving, as well as such leading brands as Elle magazine, Entertainment Weekly, Viking Culinary Arts Center, Cabela's, Circuit City, Virgin Megastore, Muvico Theater, Lucky Strike, Felt, Borders Books & Music, Wannado City, Balducci's and others. Restaurants will include Strip House and Summer Shack, as well as two new dining concepts by restaurateur Steven Hanson.
About Meadowlands Xanadu
Meadowlands Xanadu, rising at the Meadowlands Sports Complex in Northern New Jersey, is a creation of The Mills Corporation in partnership with Mack-Cali Realty Corporation and KanAm, and in cooperation with the New Jersey Sports and Exposition Authority. As lead developer of Meadowlands Xanadu, The Mills is responsible for creating the family entertainment and shopping portion of the complex, which is being financed by KanAm. Mack-Cali, in partnership with The Mills, will oversee the development of the office and hotel portion of the complex.
About The Mills Corporation
The Mills Corporation is a self-managed real estate investment trust (REIT) based in Arlington, Virginia that owns, develops, leases, manages and markets a portfolio of 41 retail and entertainment destinations totaling approximately 51 million square feet. Currently, the Company has six projects under construction or development around the world. The Company's Internet address is www.themills.com.
Mack-Cali Realty Corporation is a fully-integrated, self-administered, self-managed real estate investment trust (REIT) providing management, leasing, development, construction and other tenant-related services for its class A real estate portfolio. Mack-Cali owns or has interests in 269 properties, primarily office and office/flex buildings located in the Northeast, totaling approximately 30.1 million square feet. Additional information is available on the Company's website at www.mack-cali.com.
KanAm is one of Germany's leading private syndicators and asset managers of international real estate investments. Since its inception in 1978 the group has invested and managed a portfolio valued at approximately $10 billion in the US and Europe on behalf of private and institutional investors through publicly offered real estate funds and private placements. Since 1994, KanAm has invested approximately $1 billion in equity in various projects with the Mills Corporation.
Statements in this press release that are not historical may be deemed forward-looking statements within the meaning of the federal securities laws. Although The Mills Corporation believes the expectations reflected in any forward-looking statements are based on reasonable assumptions, the Company can give no assurance that its expectations will be attained and it is possible that our actual results may differ materially from those indicated by these forward-looking statements due to a variety of risks and uncertainties. The Mills Corporation undertakes no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise. The reader is directed to the Company's various filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including quarterly reports on Form 10-Q, reports on Form 8-K and annual reports on Form 10-K for a discussion of such risks and uncertainties.
Please note: This press release was not issued by Mack-Cali, but pertains to a joint venture projects in which Mack-Cali is involved. For additional information, please contact the individuals listed.