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Dying Shopping Malls

 
Old 05-04-2019, 11:34 AM
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Default Dying Shopping Malls

We have an awful lot of shopping malls in New Jersey. I think that's true of almost everywhere in the country. The 1960s, 1970s and 1980s were very good years for malls. There was economic prosperity, people were moving to the suburbs and shopping mall were very much in vogue. The internet hadn't yet become popular, and online shopping was still in the future.

With the 1990s and 2000s things changed rapidly. By the end of the 1990s the country was in a recession, perhaps the worst economic downturn since the great depression. Online sales started to displace brick and mortar stores and the price of gas meant that people used their cars less and less. Shopping malls, once the mecca of retail, started to take a back seat to outdoor shopping centers, big box stores and online shopping. All of a sudden, shopping malls were out of fashion.

As the 2000s became the 2010s many of the department stores and chain stores that had anchored the shopping malls ran into trouble. Stores like Sears and Macy's and many others were no longer financially sound and to survive were forced to close many of the shopping mall locations.

Today many malls are dying with vacant stores and very little customer traffic. So, the question becomes what do you do with these huge buildings, how do you repurpose them? Around here a K-Mart closed and that part of the shopping center was torn down. A Macy's, which was a part of an indoor mall also closed, and that entire wing of the mall was demolished. It seems like a shame to demolish a perfectly good building, and it's not always possible to do without demolishing the entire mall. So what is there to do with a shopping mall when there are no more stores? I've heard that some could be turned into office complexes, but it seems to me that there is a great deal of office space that vacant and currently available. I've also heard that they could be turned into housing, but I've also heard that the conversion is very expensive and it may be more practical to build purpose built apartment buildings.

So my question is what do you do with an empty shopping mall or former big box store?
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Old 05-04-2019, 01:41 PM
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We have one major traditional mall left in the Gulfport/Biloxi/Pascagoula metro area. There was one other but it has been vacant for several years in spite of several attempts to repurpose the building.
Edgewater Mall, near the Gulfport/Biloxi line is doing ok so far. But they just tore down a Sears at one end and replaced it with a movie theater. Penny's is another anchor and who knows how long they will survive. Meanwhile, two large regional department chain stores--Belk and Dillards along with specialty stores like Footlocker, Victoria's Secret, Spencer Gifts, American Eagle, Men's Warehouse, etc., along with a bunch of smaller stores keep the doors open.
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Old 05-04-2019, 01:57 PM
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I've read of some town taking the properties for their offices.


Between Atlanta and Augusta I saw a former big box store that had been converted into a huge U-store it type of facility.
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Old 05-04-2019, 02:05 PM
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They could be made into a mausoleum.
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Old 05-04-2019, 03:45 PM
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The El Con Mall that had never been very popular/stable was torn down and converted into multiple big boxes. The Foothills Mall is getting renovated/rezoned into retail, residential, restaurants, and entertainment; they're adding apartment housing, new stores, and possibly hotels. The other two malls (Tucson and Park Place) still turn a regular business for most housed in them and see large amounts of regular foot traffic. The Sears space at Park Place Mall is being converted into entertainment/arcade/bowling venue. They're shutting down the Sears location at the Tucson Mall, though I haven't seen what (if anything) is replacing it.
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Old 05-04-2019, 03:55 PM
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We have several malls here and they are doing vey well. We live at the beach and although no malls we have Tanger Outlet stores which are always busy especially on rainy days. The lower pricing at these stores attract customers from Pa. Md. D.C. Va. and NJ. There is no sales tax in Delaware and lots of people come to the beach and not just in summer.
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Old 05-04-2019, 09:01 PM
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Gyms took over some of the kmart type stores.
Dave and busters took over Sears I think it was in one of our malls
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Old 05-05-2019, 02:50 AM
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In a case of irony they could turn them into internet cafe’s where people can go to order stuff online. Amazon could buy some of them up and turn them into shipping centers.
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Old 05-05-2019, 05:13 AM
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There are some in the area that haven't done too well. But Tysons Corner and Pentagon City are booming still, I think.
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Old 05-05-2019, 05:50 AM
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The mall closest to us is still going along pretty well, Macy's is still open, as is JC Penney. Sears is about to close. Two others are not so good. One has closed and the other has a very low occupancy rate and is up for foreclosure. I was never much of a mall shopper. I always preferred outlets, or even strip malls, and of course, online shopping; even before Amazon.
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