Property Acquisition Sparks Hopes For Valle Vista


Property Acquisition Sparks Hopes For Valle Vista

Dillard's space at Valle Vista Mall Harlingen’s largely vacant Valle Vista Mall is getting an investment boost as a Los Angeles-based company announced it had acquired the retail space formerly occupied by Dillard’s.

BH Properties said it is analyzing the best use for its new property, which since 1983 had been an anchor store at Valle Vista until its recent closure. The company said its Harlingen acquisition is a good fit in its strategies to re-imagine vacant retail space.

“We believe this will be another example of our ability to buy vacancy, rework an asset to meet market demand and bring jobs to the local community,” said Scott Henry, the managing director of acquisitions for BH, and head of its Dallas office. “With great visibility and access from Expressway 83, the 103,000-square-foot box offers us a good lease up opportunity, whether it be retail, office or entertainment uses.”

A Hopeful Revival

The acquisition by BH is good news for Harlingen’s economy. The city has seen its former crown jewel mall dwindle to a few tenants in recent years. In addition to Dillard’s, the Sears store down the hall closed in 2020, along with a number of smaller retail outlets. There has been Harlingen retail growth and development along Spur 54 north of the mall, as well to just west of it with Kohl’s and Burlington opening in recent years.

The decline of Valle Vista has nonetheless been painful to see for local residents and community leaders. The revival of the Dillard’s space for new uses brightens up Harlingen’s economic outlook.

“The acquisition of the building where Dillard’s was located by BH Properties is exciting news for us,” said Raudel Garza, the manager and chief executive officer of the Development Corporation of Harlingen. “This company is well known for turning properties around and bringing a new creative mix that is welcomed in communities such as ours.”

Garza said BH has also recently acquired two other buildings in Harlingen. He indicated the development corporation is working with the company to bring new tenants to those facilities.