Rusty Lyon, the mall developer who changed the way Arizona shopped, dead at 86

Rusty Lyon
Rusty Lyon

By Catherine Reagor | The Arizona Republic

Founder of Westcor developed more than a dozen malls, including Arizona Biltmore, Scottsdale Fashion Square, Paradise Valley Mall

The next time you are shopping at Scottsdale Fashion Square, having dinner at the Arizona Biltmore or dropping your kids off at Chandler Fashion Center, thank Rusty Lyon.

He’s the visionary developer who saw metro Phoenix’s growth coming and launched most of the area’s most popular malls. Lyon, 86, recently died after a long battle with Alzheimer’s disease.

Russell “Rusty” Lyon Jr. developed more than a dozen shopping centers through Phoenix-based Westcor, which he launched in 1964. But he never sought the limelight for his work and often credited others.

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