Future of the mall still uncertain

Latham Circle Mall owner David Allen, of Realty Financial Partners, said he is in discussions with a single-entity tenant that could buy up all the vacant space in the shopping center. He is expecting to have concrete plans for the mall's future within a month.

Allen said a series of meetings are planned between Realty Financial Partners and a potential tenant. He said two or three more meetings in as many weeks will likely determine the direction of the deal.

It we decide to move forward, it will take a couple of weeks to get things going, he said.

He declined to go into detail about what type of tenant the Massachusetts-based company is currently in talks with, saying he "did not wish to go further" with that line of questioning.

In January, Allen said the mall could potentially be "repositioned" in the market. It sits on what many have described as the best location in the Capital District, the Latham Circle, yet it is down to about a dozen remaining tenants, including anchor stores such as Lowe's, J.C. Penney and a Regal Cinemas.

Joseph LaCivita, director of planning and economic development in Colonie, said he and the planning board are excited to work with Allen to make the mall a "destination location" through a "primary redevelopment of the site."

"We would love to work with Mr. Allen and whoever he brings to town," he said.

LaCivita said it is in the best interest of the town to redevelop the site and get economic activity thriving once again.

"We have a lot of aging buildings, that being one of them," he said.

He said neither a single-tenant nor the "cookie-cutter" stores that occupy most malls would be the preferable direction, though.

"That's not going to work in this sort of climate," he said.

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