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Three Seal Beach projects are adding retail, homes and hotel rooms to the city

Phoenix-based Kitchell Development Co. has started work on the second phase of Seal Beach’s Old Ranch Towne Center with all but 14,200 of the 287,000 square-foot retail center leased.

Target, the anchor tenant in the project’s first phase, opened in March. Bed, Bath & Beyond, Ralphs and Sav-On Drugs are set to open in coming months. Other retailers that have signed leases are Starbucks, Islands Restaurants and World Savings.

The 218-acre Bixby Ranch area of Seal Beach is seeing other activity, too. Just a block from the Old Ranch Town Center and visible from the San Diego (I-405) Freeway is a new Country Inn & Suites under construction.

Ayres Hotel Group in Costa Mesa bought the property and is building a three-story hotel expected to open in 10 months. The 104-room hotel is described as a limited service boutique hotel.

Also, Dallas-based Centex Corp. is in the final phase of developing 75 two-story homes on 16 acres of Bixby Ranch on Lampson Avenue in Seal Beach. About two-thirds of the homes, which range from the mid-$500,000s, still are under construction.

Old Ranch Towne Center, at Seal Beach Boulevard and the 405, seeks to “cater to the demographic that has been underserved,” according to Lisa Carter, leasing manager for Kitchell Development.

The shops are aimed at middle and high-end shoppers in the area, Carter said. According to Kitchell, the center has an average household income of $115,000 in a mile radius.

Kitchell is hoping to serve neighboring Los Alamitos and Rossmoor as well, Carter said.

Carter declined to give specifics on lease rates for the center, which is in a mostly older part of Seal Beach. She did say rent “is a lot higher than what’s going on across the street. It’s not like comparing apples to apples.”

A full-service Italian restaurant is nearing a deal to lease 7,200 square feet of space at one of the three free-standing buildings at the center, Carter said.

Bed, Bath & Beyond is set to open Sept. 15, Ralphs in November and Sav-On in January. Smaller tenants at the center are set to include Togo’s, Rubio’s Baja Grill, Singular Wireless and Mailboxes Etc. n

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