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Friday, June 29, 2018

Reflection: While My Mall Gently Weeps

   

     As the editor of Trip to the Mall I have been rather absent with content the last few months. I have not been going to any new malls or documenting much new content. With massive store closing sales including Toys R Us, The Bon-Ton and Sears, my best efforts to documenting these closures have been only frequenting my local area as best as I can. Several unforeseen circumstances have caused the future of Trip to the Mall to be sparing to new malls and destinations as I no longer have adequate time or funds to explore retail as I would like to as of right now. I am an only child to a very small family, who as any family may fight at times, disagree and argue, but love each other very much, and make an effort to spend as much time with each other as possible.

     The passing of my Father in January brought on the limitation of traveling and mall walking. Checking out new chain stores, and enjoying first time meals at new fast food chains. My local area mall is loosing its Sears and Carson Pirie Scott and Toys R Us in the adjacent lot has just closed. For the past 16 years, I have made peace with calling my community home, and watching it grow so much, and seeing so much change...for the good and the bad. Seeing so many stores close and new ones open, different chains come and go, and spending a lot of time with my Father at these places. Although he is gone, the stores are still here. However, time goes on and now the mall he took me to as a young child and shortly before his passing, us walking around together joking about Sears and laughing with the clerks at the Carson's cologne counter, time has come for the stores to leave too. The memories will never fade away, My Father will always be in my heart, and my once favorite places to shop will only exist in photographs.

     It has been a difficult past few months but some good will surely come out of it. Life will bring on new challenges and difficulties, but as my Father proved to me, never stop trying, always push through and never give up. As I was 20 years old when my Father died, listening to a song from the band Green day causes me to shed a different kind of tear now, the song "Wake Me Up When September Ends" has a lyric that is all too relatable..."Like my Fathers come to pass, twenty years as gone so fast". Time really flies, and 20 years has definitely gone by fast. Thank you for reading my friendly fellow retail lovers, surely some new and different malls can be seen shortly.

Tuesday, May 1, 2018

Reached Its High Point Long Ago: High Point Centre in Lombard, Illinois.


     Shopping malls across America becoming vacant and becoming more empty with numerous chains closing up more and more frequently. Not exactly overlooked but not given equal attention are the several thousand shopping plazas and strip malls strewn throughout each and every town and city. Starting out strong at first, with purpose, so many stores, each suiting individual needs but all serving the same purpose, are just empty storefronts now. An example made of this property pandemic is the High Point Centre in Lombard, Illinois. Built in 1992 with Cub Foods, Possibly Kids R Us (Babies R Us), Odd Lots (Big Lots), Office Depot, and several small tenants in out parcels including Hollywood Video and Burger Kings. Telling by these photos, the age of the vehicles and the stores, these had to be taken around 2004-2005. Cub Foods would have closed around 2006 and Ultra Foods opened in its place. So much has changed over a decade at this shopping center, it currently being so vacant and parts of it being demolished. I have memories of shopping at these stores and eating around this area with my parents and a very young kid. Although the memories are in my head from then, but to now connect those thoughts to actual photos to really see what the area looked like way back then long before I took an interest in retail preservation.

All of these photos are property of Loopnet. Here is the link to the leasing site where I found these photos.









To see the Cub Foods sign, a Lincoln-Mercury dealership, and the old Burger King logo on this location really is something. This has to be 2004-2005, no later than 2006 for sure.









 These Burger King photos have to be prior to 2010, after that, this location was closed for several years before being demolished and a new Burger Kind returning to this exact location.





My recent photos of the east side of the center being demolished with news of an LA Fitness coming soon.




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