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Newington Park Shopping Center sold for $13.3 million. The new owner plans to ‘transform’ it.

Jeff McMenemy

NEWINGTON – Real estate development and investment company Torrington Properties announced Friday it has acquired the Newington Park Shopping Center for $13.3 million and touted plans to “transform” the site.

The property is located at 2026 Woodbury Ave., between the Mall at Fox Run to the north and The Crossings to the south.

The Newington Park Shopping Center’s current tenants include Savers, JOANN Fabrics and Crafts and Party City, as well as restaurant spaces. York Hospital has a cardiovascular care facility on the property too.

Torrington announced it purchased the 15-acre shopping center from real estate investment trust Urstadt Biddle Properties Inc., which owned the property since 1979. The center currently has 102,000 square feet of space for commercial, retail and medical offices.

Torrington stated it plans to “transform the property into a vibrant, energized destination that will benefit Newington and the surrounding area.” The company did not immediately state any specifics about the potential redevelopment plans.

Scott Tranchemontagne, spokesperson for Torrington Properties, said the developers are “still working on the vision of what ultimately will be part” of the Newington Park Shopping Center.

But he stressed, “it will not contain any residential whatever.”

“It will remain a commercial/retail type of use,” he said during an interview Friday.

There have been discussions among area city planners how various Newington mall and retail properties could include residential down the road.

But that won’t be the case with the Newington Park Shopping Center, Tranchemontagne said.

“We spent a lot of time talking with Newington and we know very clearly what they hope to see and it does not include residential,” he said. “We have made it very clear that’s not part of the vision.”

The property is a roughly “13 acre site wedged between the back of the Crossings and the Mall at Fox Run,” he said.

Stores there include Joann Fabric and Craft Store, Savers and Party City, he said. York Hospital has a cardiovascular care facility on the property, too.

There is some vacant space at the site, he said, and Torrington will likely be looking to add tenants, Tranchemontagne said.

“I think until we get a more detailed vision for the property it’s hard to answer questions about specific uses and specific elements,” he said. “Everything’s on the table within the realm of what’s allowed there.”

“We are excited to acquire Newington Park Shopping Center and embrace the opportunity it brings to the town and the surrounding Seacoast region,” said Jay Bisognano, CEO and Principal, Torrington Properties. “Newington Park has tremendous potential to become a destination that will enhance this already bustling commercial and retail environment.”

Torrington Properties is known locally for its soon-to-open West End Yards mixed-use development in Portsmouth. Also in Portsmouth, the company recently announced plans to redevelop the closed Cinemagic movie theater into condominiums. Torrington also owns numerous other properties in Massachusetts and New Hampshire from residential to mixed-use to commercial to student housing.

The Mount Vernon Company has partnered with Torrington on several projects and is a co-investor, according to Torrington’s statement. The company is headed by Bruce A. Percelay and was founded over 30 years ago. Torrington stated it also worked with The Boulos Company to secure the Newington Park Shopping Center.

“We continue to grow our portfolio in New Hampshire through many different kinds of acquisitions and development,” Bisognano said. “And the Newington Park Shopping Center is an example of our diversification.”