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General Growth Properties issued a press release announcing it is filing for bankruptcy this morning just before 3 a.m. Eastern time.This development isn’t much of a surprise to anyone following the story. The mall owner has $27 billion in debt, much of it from huge acquisitions, like its purchase of the Rouse Co. for $12 billion in 2004.One thing we found interesting about the filing (read the full court document here) is that a large chunk of its portfolio is not included in the bankruptcy. The list of non-impacted properties includes Water Tower Place and Glendale Galleria, two of its best-know holdings, among others. Of course, the list of included assets has many trophies of its own.So how will this filing change the fate of the malls? Are we more likely to see buyers step in and purchase some chunks of this portfolio during General Growth’s reorganization, or will things continue has they have so far, with no one willing to make any big purchases in the recession?

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