CAPITAL MALL
Black Lake Boulevard, Southwest and Capitol Mall Drive, Southwest
Olympia, Washington

The first mall-type shopping hub in -or around- "O-Town" was dedicated in October 1966. SOUTH SOUND CENTER was built on a parcel located 3.2 miles east of the Washington State State House. The site was in a section of unincorporated Thurston County that was eventually annexed into the City of Lacey.

In the early 1970s, a 69.2 acre plot, lying 1.3 miles northwest of the State Capitol, was designated as the site for Olympia's second shopping mall. After some initial roadway relocation, construction got underway on CAPITAL MALL in 1977.

The single-level, fully-enclosed shopping hub was developed by El Segundo, California-based Ernest W. Hahn, Incorporated. Its first operational store, a 1-level (81,000 square foot) Seattle-based The Bon Marche, was dedicated in the summer of 1978.

The Moyer Theaters Capital Mall Cinemas, a mallway-adjacent 4-plex, opened for business October 5, 1978. The mall was officially dedicated November 15 of the same year. At this time, grand openings were held for a 1-level (34,700 square foot), Bellevue, Washington-based Lamonts and 1-level (93,400 square foot) J.C. Penney.

CAPITAL MALL encompassed approximately 584,000 leasable square feet. In March 1980, a 2-level (119,000 square foot), Seattle-based Frederick & Nelson was dedicated. Anchoring the west end of the complex, it completed its basic footprint. The GLA of CAPITAL MALL had been expanded to approximately 703,000 square feet.

Ownership changed in 1980, when Toronto's Trizec Corporation acquired the real estate holdings of the Hahn company. The merged entities were known, henceforth, as the TrizecHahn Corporation.

Frederick & Nelson was shuttered September 22, 1991. Hayward, California's Mervyn's chain opened in the store space in July 1992. The next anchor store rebranding followed the closing of Lamonts, in June 2000. This store was renovated by Richfield, Minnesota-based Best Buy, who opened in 2003.

At this time, the interior of the shopping hub was being given a 12 million dollar upgrade. This project included the installation of barrel-vaulted ceilings and an 8-bay Food Court, which included Subway, Teriyaki Japan, Thaiway Express, Villa Pizza and Panda Express. The newly-renovated mall was officially re-dedicated in October 2003.

The most recent anchor rebranding at the shopping facility involved The Bon March. As a result of Federated Stores' "Project Hyphen", all stores in The Bon Marche chain became Bon-Macy's operations on August 1, 2003. As a facet of "Project Star", Macy's nameplates were installed on March 6, 2005.

Meanwhile, in November 1998, ownership of CAPITAL MALL had changed hands. Sydney, Australia's Westfield Group acquired the center and renamed it WESTFIELD SHOPPINGTOWN CAPITAL. This was truncated to WESTFIELD CAPITAL in June 2005.

In July of the same year, construction commenced on a 13.4 acre plot northeast of the existing mall. This would become the (140,000 square foot) PROMENADE AT WESTFIELD CAPITAL, an open-air lifestyle plaza dedicated on August 18, 2006.

The primary tenants were a (33,500 square foot) Borders Books and (50,000 square foot) Bed, Bath & Beyond. The tenant list included J. Jill, Ann Taylor Loft, Chico's, Coldwater Creek, Eddie Bauer, Talbots, Message Envy and the Tuscan Aveda SalonSpa.

THE PROMENADE was followed by an expansion of the mall proper, that was built on its north side. This was anchored by the Century Olympia 14 multiplex and included 10,000 square feet of new retail space. The new cinema showed its first features May 25, 2007, replacing the mall's original 4-plex (which had closed in August 2005).

With all renovations completed, WESTFIELD CAPITAL, not including THE PROMENADE, housed approximately 748,200 leasable square feet and housed ninety-nine stores and services.

Mervyn's had shuttered their WESTFIELD CAPITAL store December 31, 2006. The space was leased to temporary tenants, such as Spirit Halloween and a mini-golf course. On August 13, 2010, a 1-level (16,000 square foot) Forever 21 opened in a portion of the store.

This was followed by a 2-level (25,000 square foot) REI (Recreational Equipment Incorporated), which opened for business May 31, 2011. The remaining first floor space was leased as a 1-level (21,300 square foot) Total Wine & More. This store began business July 18, 2013.

Westfield sold the CAPITAL complex in October 2013. The new proprietor was Starwood Retail Partners, an affiliate of Greenwich, Connecticut's Starwood Capital Group. The official name of the shopping center reverted back to CAPITAL MALL soon after the transaction closed.

Later in the Twenty tens, a new anchor store was built. A 1-level (51,100 square foot) Dick's Sporting Goods welcomed its first patrons October 28, 2016. CAPITAL MALL now enveloped approximately 799,300 leasable square feet, with over one hundred stores and services.

Sources:

www.westfield.com (The Westfield Group)
"Westfield Capital" article on Wikipedia
The Olympian
West Olympia Access Study Background Report
Thurston County, Washington property tax assessor website
www.cinematreasures.org