NAMPA — Several businesses that have occupied Nampa’s Karcher Mall for years are looking for new locations, while others say they are closing their doors for good.
The Karcher Mall was purchased in May by a California-based company Rhino Investments, which is planning a $50 million redevelopment. A few weeks ago, the company sent notices to several businesses asking them to vacate the building.
Some of the businesses received three-day notices because they were behind on their rent, while others received 30-day notices because they either weren’t paying enough rent for the size of their space or didn’t hold regular business hours, according to Rhino Investments CEO Sanjiv Chopra.
Since then, the mall’s businesses have been trying to decide on their plans for the future. Many aren’t sure of their next step because they still don’t have enough information on the mall’s redevelopment to decide. Chopra previously told the Idaho Press he expects construction to begin in late July at the earliest.
Some businesses, even those that didn’t receive notices, are looking to move out of the mall, including Aracelay’s, Karcher Arcade and Tiffany Custom Jewelry. But Karcher Arcade owner Ana Fonseca said if she can’t find another location that she can afford, she will likely go out of business.
Fonseca said she is not interested in remaining at the mall because the new owners are increasing rates above what she can afford. Sue Marostica, executive director of the nonprofit Gold Buckle Champion, said the rent for their retail store would increase from $150 per month to $4,500 per month if they opted to stay.
As a result, Marostica said Gold Buckle Champion is leaving the mall. She said she plans to keep the nonprofit active but likely won’t reopen the retail store.
Chopra said some of the mall’s tenants are paying as little as 6 cents per square foot. Any rate below 25 cents a square foot isn’t profitable, he said.
Other businesses have opted to close instead of find a new location. Bernard Hawley, owner of Nathan’s Pretzels and Nathan’s Cellular, which received a 30-day notice, said both of his businesses will close. Starting Monday, he said all of his products will be 50% off.
Not all of the Karcher Mall’s existing businesses are leaving or closing. Chopra said the mall’s biggest retailers — Mor Furniture for Less, Big 5 Sporting Goods, JoAnn Fabric and Crafts and Ross Dress for Less — are staying.
Some smaller businesses do plan to stay at the mall. Eyebrow Image Threading owner Paul Naik said he plans to keep his business at the mall.