Northgate Mall, one of the largest in Durham, has a month to pay investors, or else it may face foreclosure in the middle of the holiday season.
Court documents show the mall owes its investors more than $60 million. CBS 17 has learned the mall defaulted on a $54 million loan. Records show the mall hasn’t paid the principal or accrued interest since its May 2018 deadline.
If it’s not paid by Dec. 14, the mall could go into foreclosure.
“I was kind of surprised, but at the same time, it takes a lot for a mall to actually close down. So, I don’t think it’s going to be going anywhere,” said Brian McVeigh, a store worker at Northgate.
He’s been working there for two years. He’s hoping the mall, which has been in the community for more than 60 years, gets sold.
“If someone were to buy it, they could turn it around or do whatever,” he said.
Several store owners said they are concerned about the future. None would go on camera for an interview, though.
Online retail has changed shopping habits. Many people don’t shop at malls like they used to. However, with the holidays around the corner, McVeigh said sales will pick up.
“It always gets a lot busier during the holidays because there’s going to be more people coming to buy gifts and stuff like that,” he said.
CBS 17 has reached out to the owners of the mall and Northwood Investors in New York for comment.
Northgate officials got back to us on Thursday afternoon, saying:
While it is regrettable that pending legal action could result in Northgate Associates, LLLP no longer owning or managing Northgate Mall this does not mean the mall will cease operation. We have no reason to anticipate business interruption with ownership change. Stores within the mall have lease agreements that will remain in effect.
Northgate’s upcoming holiday season includes holiday décor throughout the mall and a number of holiday music performances, Selfies with Santa, The Polar Express Train and a multi-cultural exhibit. We understand the holiday season is a vital time of year for our businesses and encourage patrons to visit and take advantage of these festivities. We genuinely appreciate the outpouring of support we have received in recent days from our local community.”