BLOOMINGTON, Minn. — Even the nation's largest mall is feeling the impacts of the coronavirus pandemic.
In a statement to KARE 11, the Mall of America said it has been making partial mortgage payments as COVID-19 continues to impact the retail industry nationwide.
A report from CNBC said the mall, operated by private developers Triple Five Group, missed its mortgage payments in April and May. However, in its statement to KARE 11, mall officials said they've been making partial payments.
Here's the full statement from the Mall of America:
Like many other companies, our business has been critically impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Our revenues have dropped significantly, while many of our larger expenses have remained fixed. Facing significantly reduced revenues we have not met our full mortgage payment obligations. This is not unique to Mall of America and is a struggle facing countless businesses nation-wide.
We have made partial mortgage payments as well as meeting other operating expenses to keep our building functioning. Throughout this process we have remained in communication with our lenders, so they fully understood our situation.
Currently our mortgage has been submitted to a special servicer. This is a normal step in order to reach an agreement on modifications to the loan terms that works for all parties. This process is being used by companies throughout the country which have been devastated by this crisis. Our goal is to work with the special servicer – and our primary lenders – in order to resolve this difficult situation.
For nearly three decades, Mall of America has been an international retail and entertainment destination, and a Minnesota landmark. Although the process of modifying our loan will not be simple, it will allow Mall of America to remain the front door to Minnesota.
The Mall of America shut its doors in March as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. Following Gov. Tim Walz's most recent Stay Safe MN order, which has loosed some of the restrictions for retail stores, the mall is planning to reopen on June 1, with limitations.
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MOA officials said they've been working on identifying and establishing industry-wide reopening safety protocols.
The safety protocols will include:
- Social distancing
- Redirecting foot traffic
- Enhanced cleaning procedures
- Limiting capacity to 50%
The mall notes that not all of their businesses will reopen at the same time. Some may take longer.
"Reopening a building the size of Mall of America is no small task, but we are confident taking the necessary time to reopen will help us create the safest environment possible," the statement reads. "We look forward to welcoming back our team members, tenants and guests."