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Local developers buy Don Sinex out of Burlington mall redevelopment

An empty construction site with a cone, debris and grass growing.
Henry Epp
Three local developers have assumed control of the long-delayed redevelopment of Burlington's downtown mall.

Three local developers have assumed full ownership of the City Place Burlington project after buying out Don Sinex, one of their partners on the project.

“With this turn of event, the partners are excited and looking forward to bringing this long-awaited project to fruition,” said David Farrington, one of the developers, in an email.

Farrington did not disclose the terms of the deal to buy out Sinex.

Sinex knocked down the Queen City’s downtown mall nearly four years ago, promising to bring a mixed-use development to the site. But the project stalled and despite repeated assurances that construction would start, the hole in the middle of Burlington has remained.

Sinex brought on Farrington, along with Al Senecal and Scott Ireland, in 2020 after his previous partner on the redevelopment, Brookfield Asset Management, pulled out.

In an email, Farrington said Sinex would still be involved with the redevelopment of the existing mall and the old Macy’s building.

The CityPlace project will include retail space, restaurants and 427 residential units. Farrington said that the developers are working with Champlain Housing Trust and Evernorth to make at least 80 of the housing units affordable.

Mayor Miro Weinberger praised the change in ownership.

“This project will now be led by committed, experienced, local partners who have a long record of delivering successful building projects in our community,” he said in a statement.

The CityPlace project still faces a legal challenge from a group of citizens who say Sinex violated the terms of a prior settlement agreement to add more parking. Last month, attorney John Franco, who represents the residents bringing the case, told VPR they were in talks with the developers.

Have questions, comments or tips? Send us a message or get in touch with reporter Liam Elder-Connors @lseconnors

Liam is Vermont Public’s public safety reporter, focusing on law enforcement, courts and the prison system.
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