Epic Games to Convert Mall to Global HQ

The sale calls off the previous owner’s plans for a mixed-use development at the struggling retail center in Cary, N.C.

Cary Towne Center. Image via Google Street View

Epic Games Inc. has purchased Cary Towne Center, a 980,000-square-foot shopping mall in the Research Triangle, from Turnbridge Equities, which acquired the asset in January 2019. The buyer plans to convert the 87-acre property into its new global headquarters campus by 2024, comprising office and retail space.

The mall changed ownership back in 2019, after the loss of three of its five anchor tenants, with its occupancy rate dropping to 65 percent. The current deal cancels Turnbridge’s plans to revitalize the struggling mall into a mixed-use development, labeled Carolina Yards. The first phase would have comprised 1.2 million square feet of proposed office, retail and residential space, as well as a hotel. Last April, the company acquired another mixed-use development in the Triangle. The Creamery, a former dairy plant in Raleigh, N.C., now functioning as a commercial property, traded for $34.7 million

Making Local History

Epic Games headquarters at 620 Crossroads Blvd.

Epic Games has been based in Cary for more than two decades. The video game and software developer currently operates at 620 Crossroads Blvd. The company purchased the 115,000-square-foot building in 2007 for $1.6 million, CommercialEdge data shows.

Cary Towne Center is located at 1105 Walnut St., southeast of downtown. The mall sits 2 miles from the interchange between interstates 440 and 40, and 10 miles east of central Raleigh.

Stephen Porterfield of Capital Associates represented Epic in the transaction. Construction of the campus is set to begin this year. Across the street from the site, a partnership of Hines, Columbia Development and USAA Real Estate is developing Fenton, a mixed-use project spanning 69 acres. Last November, the venture received $199 million in construction financing, one of the largest commercial development mortgages in the Triangle’s history.

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