$500-Million Riverside Complex : Huge Mall to Be Showcase

Times Real Estate Editor

A strategic commercial site in Riverside--in one of the nation’s fastest growing and hottest real estate markets--will become a major center for business, retail and technology.

Its showcase--an enclosed 1.3-million-square-foot mall to be anchored by six department stores--is a joint venture of the Edward J. DeBartolo Corp., the nation’s largest shopping center developer, and home-grown T. & S. Development Inc.

Master-planned Canyon Springs will evolve as a $500-million project covering 400-acres at the junction of the Pomona Freeway and Interstate 215.

Upon its build-out within 15 years, it is expected to have more than 6 million square feet of floor area and a combined freeway frontage of more than two miles. It anticipates having up to 20,000 employees working in the mixed-use center.


The property is adjacent to the Riverside International Raceway, immediately to the east.

A little farther east is burgeoning Moreno Valley, incorporated as a city in November, 1984, with a population of 47,000. Today, with an estimated count of 70,000, it is second only to Riverside (189,000) in that category and still sprouting. Meanwhile, the market area for Canyon Springs is growing by 2.5% annually, and demographers expect it to top the 1 million mark this year.

The communities of Sunnymead, Moreno and Edgemont make up the city of Moreno Valley and undoubtedly will become prime users and customers of Canyon Springs, as well as providing a labor pool for the center. Currently, as seen from the air, most of the valley is a series of rooftops for housing projects, and average daily freeway traffic adjacent to the project exceeds 70,000 cars.

Within 10 miles of the planned center, largest to date of any proposed in Riverside or San Bernardino counties--the Inland Empire--are more than 40,000 planned residential units in various housing tracts owned by some of the top names among Southern California home builders--John Lusk, Robert Warmington, William Lyon, Randall Presley, Pacesetter, Barratt, Woodhaven, Deane Bros. and Covington. With grading and paving for the infrastructure expected to be completed by late summer, the first phase of construction at Canyon Springs ultimately will total 544,000 square feet, starting with 110,000 square feet and including an eight-plex theater, sofa factory and a furniture/arts gallery as part of the 250,000-square-foot Canyon Springs Plaza. The plaza will be located northeast of the main site, off Day Street and between the Pomona Freeway and Box Springs Road.


The plaza also will add a home-improvement center and a 150-room Canyon Springs Inn during its three-year build-out plan.

Other segments of this phase include a business park of 187,000 square feet and an office park featuring a boomerang-shaped, four-story office building containing 87,000 square feet, facing the Pomona Freeway. The unusually shaped structure, designed by Leason Pomeroy Associates, is the first of three similar structures.

Construction is expected to commence early next year on the first building, along with two restaurants taking up 20,000 square feet.

Within Canyon Springs’ 6,095,000-square-foot total build-out plan, are 3.8 million square feet of space for commercial and retail use, 1.3 million square feet for a mall, 545,000 square feet for the business park (across Interstate 215, immediately west of the planned mall) and 450,000 square feet for the aforementioned plaza. Coldwell Banker is the leasing agent.


Under terms of the joint venture, Debartolo will serve as managing partner for the mall and retain a partnership for the north half of the center, while T.& S. will manage the southern half.

Although the DeBartolo firm, based in Youngstown, Ohio, is well known in the business world for its development of shopping centers, hotels, condominiums, office projects and sports enterprises, T.& S. Development Inc. of Riverside has been a low-key operation--to date.

Its principals include Jay Self, 41, chairman of the board, former banker and a transplanted Texan; Mark Thompson, 38, president, who had toiled for five years as a commercial broker for Coldwell Banker in Orange County but otherwise rarely has been away from his native Riverside; Dennis E. Morgan, 35, executive vice president and controller; and John S. Curts, 37, vice president for development, a former senior planner with the city of Riverside Planning Department who saw the proposed plans and decided to join the company.

Thompson and Self founded the company in November, 1974, and proceeded to develop more than 1.2 million square feet of real estate investment properties, including commercial, office and mixed-use projects within the Riverside-San Bernardo Inland Empire.


These include, in Riverside, the 22-acre Canyon Crest Towne Center, where the firm is headquartered; 10-acre Lincoln Plaza, 12-acre Hardman Shopping Center; 17-acre Park Sierra and eight-acre Woodcrest Plaza. They also developed similar projects in Sunnymead, Hesperia, Rancho Cucamonga and Chino.

Currently planned are North Springs, 43-acre specialty center, the 10-acre, 215-unit AmberGate Apartments in Riverside and a 10-acre Lake Elsinore Town Center.

Total improvement costs--for roads, sewers, storm drains, utilities, traffic signals and landscaping within the assessment district created by the city of Riverside--are being financed through two series of bonds, amounting to $33 million. To date, the Canyon Springs Assessment District is believed to be second largest in Southern California, only behind the Irvine Co.

Financing will be provided by Wells Fargo Bank. Grading has been undertaken by E. L. Yeager Construction Co. Riverside Construction Co. will provide the infrastructure and P.O.D. has been named landscaping architects.


Other announced principal firms include Greiner Engineering of California, DeRevere, Wise, Garakian & Associates; Tascor Construction Co., and Maxwell Starkman Associates.