Skip to comments.America’s malls seek a life beyond retail
Posted on 02/09/2013 7:54:56 PM PST by 2ndDivisionVet
The winter sunlight barely touches the depths of the abandoned store, where wires dangle from the ceiling, wood shavings scatter the floor, a King Lear shelf marker lies on the stairs, and a Led Zeppelin poster hangs spurned in a rack.
The standalone building in Danbury, Connecticut, still bears the name of the Borders book chain that collapsed in 2011, and strewn on its cash register are fire-sale price lists for its fixtures and fittings. But nobody wanted them either.
Instead its 8ft book cases stand bare and upright in the gloom, like the ruins of a bygone age. In a country that built its towns around consumerism, it is an eerie preview of the future for acres of retail property that Americans no longer need.
The ranks of bricks-and-mortar shoppers have thinned since the financial crisis as a weak economy and the rise of ecommerce have made the dated interiors and badly chosen locations of many stores even less attractive.
The reality is were over-built, says Gerry Mason, executive managing director at property group Savills, who predicts that about 15 per cent of the USs 1,300 biggest enclosed malls will go out of business over the next five years.
Real estate agents say that even properties with a future cannot build it on retail alone: services such as dry cleaners, nail salons and sports clubs are likely to occupy many former shops as the face of Americas built environment is redrawn...
(Excerpt) Read more at ft.com ...
Roving bands of yutes tend to dampen shoppers feelings.
A local retailer who is going out of business told me her conservative shoppers all cut back after the ‘08 election. She said however, the EBT crowd was spending like there’s no tomorrow. Bottom line, the smart people are holding their money close, preparing for a rainy day. The parasites think the gravy train will last forever. Rude awakening coming.........
In Annapolis, we have 3 malls within 20 minutes of each other. It is rather crazy. I predict one will close in the next ten years and most likely that will be Marley Station which is old and dumpy. I know that Arundel Mall with new casino and Annapolis Mall (for the rich and affluent) will stay open.
The life after retail is called the village.
Why drive / park when you can walk from your home to your cafe-barber-gallery-cleaner-hotel-convenience store etc.
Save the car for bulk purchases at Walmart-Sams-Costco-Lowes.
Most everything else can be had on-line.
Welcome to the 21st Century.
Arundel Mills Mall is usually very hectic with activity. Even in the depths of the 2008 recession, that area, home to many federal workers, was immune to the downturn. It’s kind of a weird place, set in an affluent suburb, where the gilded Mandarins of the middle bureaucracy mix with the occasional pack of feral youth from nearby Baltimore.
I am sure some bad things happen there from time to time, but I have survived several outings there without a scratch. CCW would be very useful in those environs, but the Kingdom of Maryland does not allow its subjects to have the means to protect themselves.
Since you are in Maryland, you may recall how Landover Mall went downhill and was eventually torn down. The politically incorrect, unspoken version of what happened, is that packs of feral youth scared off shoppers. The politically correct version is that the Lerner Company did not maintain adequate security, or work hard enough to keep upscale stores in the mall.
I am not currently in Maryland...thank God. I live in the great state of Texas. However, I have been on trips to the Kingdom of Maryland on a couple of occasions.
Yes, I remember that Landover Mall was like the badlands of post-apocalyse. So, I assiduously avoided passing by that contaminated landfill.
The same thing could eventually happen to Arundel Mills Mall, but they do have a small army of mall cops and frequent drive-bys by county law
enforcement keeping it mostly safe.
Maybe they could make a whole bunch of Blues Brothers sequels.
You MIGHT live.
anybody with two or more working
brain cells knows the mall scene
has been overbuilt since 1980 or so.
The only place I would ever go to now in Bal’more would be the regular tourist areas and I would make a hasty retreat before the vampires come out for dinner.
In my miss-spent youth, I was known to head-bang, imbibe copious amounts of spirits, and try to meet the Rock and Roll gal of my dreams at Hammerjacks. However, I survived that scandalous part of my youth with the greater part of my brain cells intact. :-D
Oh, I have never been there. However, the wikipedia entry about the mall suggests that it is just a lovely place.
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we wouldn’t be overblt if we had a pro-business administration, that was also pro-american.
Wow, I haven’t double posted in ages.
Sorry ‘bout that.
In Annapolis, we have 3 malls within 20 minutes of each other. It is rather crazy.
If you do an economic analysis, in the present retail environment, it would tell you not to build a mall. However, the analysis results change when you take into account tax incentives, development incentives and other lucrative deals made by politicians at all levels. Thats how we end up so over-built. Rest assured the developer gets his profit. Its the retailer who gets stuck. Then, you add into the equation kill-the-retail political correctness. A mall in Tampa, next to the stadium, wanted to close when teams from historically black colleges played. This is because of flash mobs and riots that occurred EVERY time these teams played. The ALCU took them to court and they were ordered to stay open. The stores all abandoned their leases and the mall is now a parking lot.
Id imagine that Obamacare will further hit the retail industry as most stores are marginal at best. A sudden mandated increase in labor costs will cause them to go into the red and the will be forced to close.
There used to be a dwarf headbanger that was a minor celebrity, because she was there all the time.
I remember it had the most expensive beer in town, something like 3 dollars for a can of Budweiser. In 1985.
“Roving bands of yutes tend to dampen shoppers feelings.”
I remember visiting the actual Borders store that is the subject of the article, back when it was open.
There were no “yutes” there.
It’s not even in a “mall”, per se.
It was a Borders bookstore mated to a Circuit City in one large building. Not connected to a mall.
The Circuit CIty closed too, and is now occupied by a P.C. Richard electronics store.
There’s a casino in Maryland? I like Annapolis Mall, it’s a nice place to shop.
I loved Landover Mall when I was a kid. Yes, it was eventually overrun. Very sad. But then the Capital Centre was re-imagined as a mall/amusement atmosphere and I have not had a desire to visit it. Has anybody here visited that place?
LOL. Hammerjacks! Just seeing the ads in the Baltimore alternative weekly and hearing the ads on DC101 made me think, “I’ll just stay in town and go to a movie or to the 9:30 Club.”
It seems as though Maryland has become one giant John Waters movie. But I enjoyed growing up there and wouldn’t have traded those experiences for anything else. ‘HFS and Kemp Mill Records made it all worthwhile.
It was glorious, my FRiend, just glorius!
None of that auto-tuned, Euro-weenie dance music that followed me home from my last deployment and is now so prevalent on music stations catering to today’s yutes.
We were metal, we were proud, and we ruled suburbia with a with knuckles open glove and a iron fist. lulz...
To be fair, Wikipedia included this bit “After the Baltimore riot of 1968 produced white flight, the mall revenues declined and Sears left.”
I may have seen this dwarf you are referring to, but I saw a lot of things back then that I can’t remember. I do remember smoke filled rooms, blaring metal music, amateur pole-dancing, glitter covered Patty Smyth vixens, and magical unicorns floating through the air but that was probably just the Jim Beam talking.
It was something like this:
That's another thing. Our demographics are collapsing. Want to see the future of our country? Just take a look at Japan. They're 20 years ahead of us.
LOL! True. I guess I was happy enough to listen to the cassettes in my truck as I waited in endless Beltway traffic to get somewhere! “Oooooh-ooooh, growing up.”