After more than 2 years of effort, two investment groups, 452 OM RD, LLC and Highmark Mammoth Investments, LLC, led by local investors Paul Rudder and Drew Hild, are closing escrow on the Sierra Center Mall, located at 452 Old Mammoth Road, in Mammoth Lakes.
The 76,000-square foot, three-story mixed use building is the largest commercial mixed-use retail and office building in Mammoth and is home to Mammoth Outdoor Sports, Shogun Restaurant and Mono County offices among others.
In recent years, the property had fallen on hard times after the lender had taken control from the previous owner, who was suffering the effects of the general economic recession, and associated drop in property values, making it impossible for them to continue operating under a huge debt load. The net result of this transition was that the property lost tenants and did not seem to have any life to it, as many locals wondered what would resurrect the once robust and fully-leased property.
Paul Rudder and Drew Hild are no strangers to working together. In 2006, Paul and Kathleen Rudder owned Sierra Center and engaged Hild of Highmark who then sold the property for them. The two also worked together on the acquisition and disposition of a 350,000 square-foot regional mall in coastal Oregon, anchored by Macy’s, JC Penney and Sears, buying in 2007 and then selling in 2010.
“We are coming full circle back to Sierra Center where we started and we are happy to do so,” Rudder noted. He went on to say, “Our goal is to re-animate the building to make it a lot more user-friendly and fun.”
Hild, his partner in the deal, said “we want to make it a place locals as well as visitors will want to come to.” The partners stated that they would immediately address some of the dated look and feel of the building and would be doing several improvement projects right away.
They also said that they “really wanted to change the image of the building, suggesting that a name change was in the works” as well as some other branding ideas. Hild went on to say, “We want to also create some positive energy here championing the idea that we will come out of the recession and that Mammoth will recover despite some of the current challenges it faces” and went on further to say “we feel very bullish on Mammoth in the long run.”
Hild then pointed to the recovery in other markets and said “that real estate will recover here too.” Rudder added, “Mammoth is a great place to vacation, and an even better place to live and work and we want to get that message out and promote it.”
Rudder and Hild said that their immediate plans were to focus on the needs of the existing tenants and do everything possible to help their experience at the building improve. They have formed a new Company, Highmark Property Management Company which will handle the property management of Sierra Center, with Rudder handling the day to day operations at the building.
Highmark Advisors will continue to represent the property for leasing inquires. Contact Drew Hild at 310.871.0870. -Press Release
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