After months of speculation, developer Rick Caruso announced Thursday that he will not run for Los Angeles mayor next year.
The billionaire shopping center developer – famous for the Grove and the Americana at Brand in Glendale – said he wanted to continue working on major developments in and around Los Angeles.
“I love Los Angeles and believe in this city, but it is not the appropriate time for me to step away from Caruso Affiliated,” he said in a statement late Thursday afternoon.
Caruso considered running for mayor for more than a year, publicly suggesting a run in interviews. The speculation over his candidacy intensified after private equity executive and former mayoral aide Austin Beutner pulled out of the race and Caruso’s short-lived bid for the Los Angeles Dodgers collapsed. More recently, he had been inquiring into hiring a campaign team and buying ad time.
Caruso has a long history of service on several city commissions, including a stint on the police commission during the ouster of Bernard Parks as police chief.
Caruso’s decision not to run leaves four main candidates in the race: Councilman Eric Garcetti, Controller Wendy Greuel, Councilwoman Jan Perry and radio talk show host Kevin James. Figures released this week show Garcetti and Greuel leading the fundraising derby, each raising about $2.8 million.