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Desc:My local mall just closed after years of decline. This guy filmed a walk-through on its last day.
Category:Business, Nature & Places
Tags:urban decay, west virginia, economics, dead mall, label scar
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Comment count is 13
The WalMart at one end is doing just fine, though.

https://www.google.com/maps/@39.4514879,-77.9880634,1107m/data =!3m1!1e3
The WalMart has always been this mall's main attraction. In the late 90's they closed and sealed off the indoor entrance to the WalMart from the mall, making it so you had to go outside to walk between the two. The current plan as I understand it is to keep the WalMart, JCPeney, and Bon Ton, tear down the rest of the mall, and build a new shopping center around them. I'm not sure if this is true, but the rumor is that WalMart owns their lot rather than renting it from the mall's parent company.

Our local mall went into foreclosure earlier this week. The article about it mentioned that most, if not all businesses currently there are already in a month-to-month lease or "special arrangement". I kind of saw the writing on the wall when chain stores started to leave to be replaced by "dollar gifts" or "handmade bag" stores. Also the food court has suffered through 5-6 losses and takeovers in the past couple of years. The "Info" desk is now simply a place to order scratch offs and lottery tickets.

The slow death of these once iconic American retail monstrosities is both fascinating and strangely depressing at the same time.
I'm fascinated with what will take their place as social meeting grounds. For several generations, they functioned as the town square used to. When we're not even united by consumerism, what's left?

Sanest Man Alive
Hate, fear, and desperation, if current trends illustrate anything.

A mall in our town was sold off many a year ago due to a combination of slowing business and oft-reported gang violence in the nearby neighborhood, and sometimes right in the parking lot. Eventually the stores were all abandoned (except for the adjoining Burlington) and the whole place was bought up by a local Baptist church looking to upgrade to megachurch status.

The history of this mall is complicated, but probably similar to many others. It's equidistant from Hagerstown MD and Winchester VA, both of which already had popular established malls to compete with. It went through a string of owners, each with plans that were started and never finished, with a healthy dose of mismanagement. The penultimate owner was a university that intended to convert stores into classroom space and allow business students to get hands-on experience running the place, but that university lost accreditation and went belly up. At the end, Several large areas were rented by a mega-church called The Living Room. I'm glad that they have a plan for the space and that the building won't just sit and rot for years. I will miss it, though. I played mini golf and pinball there. I hung out with my friends. I ate in the food court. It's just another part of my youth that is disappearing. That's the normal course of life, though. The world keeps turning.
infinite zest
I don't spend any more time in shopping malls than I need to, but I never understood the ubiquotous shift to open-air. It's based on Malls in Southern California, Florida, basically places where the temperature is mild at worst even during the worst time of the year. Like, when I lived in Milwaukee Wisconsin, I'd regularly duck into the downtown indoor mall {I believe it's about to close too due to the popularity of the new Open-air malls in the city's outskirts)just to get out of the extreme cold, and sometimes do the same on really rainy days in Portland, Oregon. Because why not? Free public bathrooms, usually some free samples from the food court, and I'll usually go into the Gamestop just to see if any cool shit's on sale, just to kill them time and warm up before I go back out into the elements.

And that always seemed to be the strategy: you're there anyway, why not rack your brain for something that you've been putting off getting because it requires a trip to the mall? But outdoor malls seem to defeat that mindset: I used to wait around for my ex to get off of her work across the street from the new open air, and there were plenty of days where I don't think I could've braved walking past every store. And the stores themselves don't have public bathrooms, so in general it was just the California Pizza Kitchens and Potbellys that would get business from a cold pussy like myself.

Anyway this is fucking awesome, and I've found a new channel to subscribe to!
infinite zest
whoops meant as a reply to Sanest Man, but it's fucking freezing and I don't wanna go back and exchange it. POETV, it's just like a minimall!

Hey, Zest. Nice to see you back around.

infinite zest
shit.. looking up the mall in Milwaukee, even the gamestop is gone (undoubtedly due to theft; it's pretty rough there) BUT at least Jake's Deli is still there, find me a better Reuben anywhere in these United States and I'll be your slave for a week.

infinite zest
Thanks gravel! It's great to be back! In the last 10 months I almost died due to a UTI, and just got out of jail where I was stuck for about 3 months. Did age 34 just totally suck balls for reasons that spiraled out of control to anyone else?!? Worst year ever. Still the same old Zest, just with a couple of prison tattoos. Of bunnies of course.

Great to be back on this side of the Portal! :)

When you disappeared, people were really genuinely worried about you. You were missed.

Boomer The Dog
It is sad, my local Parkway Center Mall (which I call Barkway) closed a few years ago for good after a long decline with stores closing and sections and floors being closed off. One issue Barkway had was structural problems and sinking cracks in it.

A decent amount of memories for a mall right up the street.

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