I have confirmed with a representative from Sanford Health that they are not planning to purchase Gateway Mall in Bismarck, despite rumors and possible hints to the contrary. The representative indicated that these types of rumors often accompany Sanford coming into new towns. I’ve also now received confirmation from Gateway Fashion Mall owner, Raymond Arjmand, that this rumor is false.
Sanford Health has previously confirmed purchasing land in north Bismarck near a busy intersection, but that does not appear to be the busy intersection containing Gateway Mall.
The original story reporting on this “rumor” is below.
I have received a news tip that Sanford Health, which is acquiring Medcenter One, is in talks to purchase the plagued Gateway Fashion Mall from California businessman Raymond Arjmand.
At this point, this is only a rumor, but there may already be hints that this rumor could become reality.
According to an interview with Sanford CEO Kelby Krabbenhoft in a Bismarck Tribune article dated July 12, 2012, “Medcenter One has already purchased land in north Bismarck.” The article further adds that the land is at a “busy intersection.” Could that busy intersection in north Bismarck be Century Avenue and State Street – where Gateway Fashion Mall is located? We shall see.
Gateway’s location right off two easily accessible highways would be beneficial for a healthcare provider, especially for one that also has locations in Dickinson, Jamestown, and Fargo… each of which is along I-94.
It wouldn’t be that far-fetched to believe that Arjmand would be willing to part with his dressed-up 1970s-era mall that hasn’t fared as he anticipated. Despite aggressive plans to reinvent the mall, which reportedly had included the planned addition a new anchor store and improved food court, Gateway has failed to regain the footing it lost decades ago.
Gateway Mall, which opened in 1979, has had a rocky history, especially in recent years. Its center anchor space, in particular, has been a revolving door since Herberger’s departed in 1994.
If this rumor develops into realty, it would be quite an ironic twist considering that Medcenter One’s chief local competitor has anchored Gateway with its Primecare Medical Mall since 2002.
I have sent emails to Arjmand and Sanford’s media relations department requesting confirmation and will post further udpates as they come available. If anyone else has any information, please share it below or contact me directly.