By Patric Hedlund
Tejon Ranch Corporation released news last week that it is in early stages of developing an "outlet mall" at the northern base of the Grapevine, in the eastern Tejon Industrial Complex. The news comes just as the company’s stock (TRC) was downgraded from "buy" to "hold" by some Wall Street analysts, who are belatedly noting that the revenue spike on the company’s books a year ago was due to a onetime conservation easement sale to the Tejon Ranch Conservancy with $15,750,000 in California tax dollars.
Concept drawings for "The Outlets at Tejon Ranch" are published on a Tejon Ranch website with text that appears to be seeking to interest investors and to invigorate stock sales.
"The Outlets at Tejon Ranch is an exciting new premier outlet retail development located at one of California’s busiest highway junctures-where Interstate 5 and Highway 99 merge together between Bakersfield and Los Angeles."
The prospectus projects a target market of 3.2 million people "with high disposable incomes living within an hour’s drive, acquisitive consumers who are anxious to shop at an outlet center closer to home."
The proposal mentions the mall would be "poised to serve the shopping needs of residents, tourists and passersby alike." It defines three geographic zones from which the customers would be attracted: "a Bakersfield/Southern San Joaquin market; Northwestern Los Angeles County, including the communities in the Santa Clarita and San Fernando Valleys; and the huge volume of highway travelers/tourists on I-5."
It goes on to say that "The Outlets at Tejon Ranch represents a historic opportunity for outlet retail in one of the remaining voids in the State of California."
Tejon Ranch spokesperson Barry Zoeller has denied there are plans for a "destination location" casino in that area.
This is part of the May 18, 2012 online edition of The Mountain Enterprise.
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