Magna Entertainment Corp. and Caruso Affiliated announced Sept. 28 they have completed operating agreements for the proposed development of approximately 51 acres of undeveloped lands surrounding Santa Anita Park. Previously the subject of an April 2004 letter of intent, the project is a mixed-use development with approximately 800,000 square feet of retail, entertainment and restaurants as well as approximately 4,000 parking spaces.
The project is to be presented to the Arcadia City Council early next year.
"We are delighted to be able to move forward with this joint venture first contemplated in early 2004. Rick Caruso has been a top developer for quite some time and the prospect of combining his development talents with our horseracing facility and track operations expertise is very exciting," said Frank Stronach, chairman and interim chief executive officer of MEC. Santa Anita Park, which first opened for Thoroughbred horse racing in 1934, is situated on approximately 305 acres of land about 14 miles northeast of Los Angeles. It is famed for its art-deco style grandstand and view of the San Gabriel Mountains.
Under MEC's and Caruso's equal funding requirements, each have a 50% ownership interest in the joint venture, which will lease the lands underlying the project from MEC under a long-term agreement. Caruso will secure financing, act as property manager and be responsible for leasing activities during and after the project's construction.