Columbus

FRANKLIN TOWNSHIP, OH-A large renovation project to revitalize the troubled Westland Mall here has been put on hold, after plans to put in a large Menards store as an anchor have been postponed. The 860,000-square-foot mall, built in 1969 and enclosed in the early 1980s, has gone from 80 stores in its heyday to about 30 stores, with only anchor Sears remaining. The property is just off of Interstate 270, intersecting West Broad Street.

A spokeswoman with Plaza Properties, owner of the mall, tells GlobeSt.com that Menards leadership asked to put a signed contract for a new store at the mall on hold. She says she can’t say what would have been improved. “Menards was the catalyst for the renovation, we hadn’t gone through the entire final development process,” she says. The mall is about 25% occupied, she says.

Menards reportedly has a few stores planned for the Columbus area, but has put the stores on hold during the economic downturn. A company spokesman did not return calls for comment.

Westland had formerly had a few other anchors, such as J.C. Penney and Lazarus. The J.C. Penney store closed in 1997, moving to the new Tuttle Crossings retail center nearby, and the Lazarus-turned-Macy’s was closed by the company in 2007. A former Woolworth store was turned into a Staples, but the office supply store is not attached to the mall. On the mall Web site, Plaza says it wants to attract a “value-orientated” tenant base, to “cater to customers looking for substantially lower price points.”