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SIMI VALLEY, CA-Scanlan Kemper Bard of Portland, OR has acquired one of the largest community centers in this city, the 287,004-sf Mountaingate Plaza, from Los Angelesl-based RP Properties for $39.6 million. The center occupies one of the busiest intersections in the area, according to Irvine-based Faris Lee Investments, which brokered the deal.

Richard Walter and Donald MacLellan of Faris Lee represented the seller and the buyer. The property is on the northeast corner of Los Angeles Avenue and First Street, just south of the 188 Freeway.

Built in 1976, Mountaingate Plaza was renovated in 2003 and 2004. It was 92% occupied at the time of the sale, excluding the previously occupied Edwards Theatre space, with a partial list of tenants that include Rite Aid, Big 5 Sporting Goods, Starbucks, Bally Total Fitness and Valley Produce.Marketing the property posed a challenge in that the retail center is occupied by such a diverse tenant mix, which included a new specialty grocer tenant and discount value-oriented retailers, according to MacLellan. Buyer SKB made a “strong commitment up front with a non-refundable deposit upon the signing of the contract,” MacLellan says.

Among the attractions for the buyer were the strong residential base and the limited potential for new competition due to tight land availability, according to MacLellan. He points out that a population of approximately 115,000 lives within five minutes from the property and the average annual household income in the trade area tops $73,000.

Scanlan Kemper Bard reports that the vacant former Edwards Theatre space at the center “provides a significant upside potential” for the real estate investment firm.

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