Fashion Island Mall Prepares for $100 Million Makeover

Sluggish spending isn't getting the bigwigs at Newport Beach's Fashion Island mall down—in fact, they're so optimistic about the economy's impending turnaround that they're betting $100 million on it. The LA Times today <a business="""" href="reveals plans for a large-scale upgrade to the luxury shopping destination, which include "opening a Nordstrom department store and Dean & DeLuca gourmet grocery, adding new fountains and a 24-foot-high water wall and enhancing the Mediterranean-inspired architecture and landscaping."

Developer Irvine Co. is said to be initiating the project now in order to take advantage of renovation deals, in hopes that by the time it's complete, the economy will be on the upswing. Irvine Co. Retail Properties president Keith Eyrich tells the paper: "Are we affected by the current economic situation? Of course. But we don't focus on that when we take on a project of this magnitude. The economy will turn...It'll be great when we come out of it to have this center at its peak." Not sure about you, but nothing loosens up our battle-scarred wallets like a shiny new fountain.

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