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Nordstrom agrees to anchor Rick Caruso's Carlsbad mall

Nordstrom agrees to anchor Rick Caruso's Carlsbad mall
The outdoor shopping and entertainment center proposed by develper Rick Caruso in Carlsbad would occupy 15% of the 203-acre site. (Caruso Affiliated)

Nordstrom Inc. has agreed to anchor the large shopping center in Carlsbad being planned by Los Angeles developer Rick Caruso.

The prominent Seattle-based department store chain would occupy a two-level, 123,000-square-foot space in the open-air retail, dining and entertainment promenade envisioned at the intersection of Interstate 5 and Cannon Road in Carlsbad, Caruso said.

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Caruso, who built the outdoor Grove shopping center in Los Angeles, has a contract to buy 203 acres of land at that location from San Diego Gas & Electric Co., pending approval of his proposed project.

The land is on the south shore of Agua Hedionda Lagoon, a 400-acre coastal wetland in north San Diego County, where tides ebb and flow with the Pacific Ocean. Caruso said last month that he planned to preserve most of the land – 176 acres – as open space while developing the remaining 15%.

Nordstrom would be the "fashion anchor," Caruso said, because people who live in the area like the store.

"During our three years of listening to Carlsbad residents, we have learned that Nordstrom was the topmost request from the community when it came to retail," Caruso said.

The overall look and feel of the yet-to-be-named promenade is to be pedestrian-friendly and low-scale, Caruso said.

The developer hopes that his proposal, first announced in 2012, will be approved by the Carlsbad City Council or in a public election. The California Coastal Commission would also have to sign off before construction could begin.

Twitter: @rogervincent 

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