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Meet the new mall…

…same as the old mall. Except for 20% less stores, of course. Less Stores! More Space!

Danville mall renovations create momentum

Obviously, we have a new definition of the word “momentum”. The former Iraqi Minister of Information could have easily found new employment with Hull Storey Gibson with this lovely public relations pile of horsecrap.

You’ll notice that the mall owners’ policy of sending local businesses packing was not even mentioned… but the lovely photos on the wall were. I’ll paraphrase the Wizard of Oz by saying “Pay no attention to the empty spaces behind the particle board wall!” How did Suit City survive the “local retailer purge”? It had to be a blessing…

I’m glad to say that the interior design looks lovely but that’s no reason to attract people from more than 30 miles away. As for the mall cops, they’ve been quite busy running around and trying to stop people from taking photos of the renovations. (Oh yeah, they failed when it came to SouthsideCentral). The classic photographs? They’re great to see for the first five times you see them, but I’d really be impressed if the mall was filled with all of these “national retailers” that Hull Storey Gibson has promised that will flock to the newly improved Danville Mall. Oh yeah, that’s still a horrible name.

One R&B commenter hit the jackpot with his quote…

I’m sure they do hope they get an anchor tenant. That’s like saying the city and county hope a car manufacturer decides to locate a giant plant at the Berry Hill Mega Park. Wishing and hoping and praying and thinking doesn’t get it done. Report on it when it happens.

Lee Smallwood “Gets It”. Unfortunately if the R&B took his advice and got rid of Elzey-brand Fluff stories, they’d be down to a 12 8 page Sunday edition.

Right now, I’ve got -110 on which renovation will be complete first… either Downtown Danville’s The River District’s streetscaping or the mall’s new business plan. That money line goes off the board if neither happens before the end of 2013. Come to think of it, that’s probably what will happen anyway.

6 comments to Meet the new mall…

  • It would appear that who will finish first all depends on what you count as part of the renovation. The sidewalk phase of the “River District” is just about done, but the fountain will take a while. The Mall seems to be claiming that they will have the exterior and the second set of escalators done by Black Friday, but apparently a third set of escalators will be going in next year. How on Earth does that mall need 3 sets of escalators? For almost the whole time I’ve been here we’ve been making due with the semi-functional elevator and NO escalators in the mall proper.

  • Jeff

    I admit that the tossing out of local businesses didn’t make a lot of sense to me, but the mall interior does look great, (as I assume the outside will eventually) and while that alone will not turn the economy of Danville around, I believe it is a positive overall for Danville. And Danville Mall is not a very original name, but then Piedmont Mall wasn’t exactly the most clever name ever either.

    So what is your point Bruce?

    Did the mall not need renovations?

    Is the mall more likely or less likely to draw new tenants with the renovations than they were before when it certainly looked the part of failing mall?

    What would you have rather have seen done? What would have made you say “good job”?

    • SouthsideCentral’s point is that we put opinions, stories and anything we want out so that others can see them and respond to them if they choose. It works.

      Did the mall need renovations?
      It definitely needed sound ownership. It needed maintenance. Renovations rarely harm business, but I don’t think it was “needed”. But hey, it’s not my money they’re spending.

      Is the mall more likely or less likely to draw new tenants with the renovations than they were before when it certainly looked the part of failing mall?
      My headline said it all. Nothing’s changed. New national chain tenants aren’t likely to embrace Danville’s demographics and economic condition.

      What would you have rather have seen done? As said before many times, I’d have liked HSG to rethink their policy of kicking out good paying local businesses.

      What would have made you say “good job”? Having a real game plan with announced new national chain tenants announced… right now it’s a beautiful new building that’s more vacant that it started.

  • Jeff

    I agree with you or I should say, you agree with me, that displacing the local businesses was an odd business model that I don’t understand. But beyond that, I think what they are doing is sound, they are attempting to make their mall more attractive to retailers and to customers.

    It seems like what you’re saying is that the owners don’t know what they are doing because the economy is bad in Danville, and bacause of that they shouldn’t have invested money in renovating their mall, at least not until new tenants had been signed, or until the economy improves.

    Hull Storey Gibson cannot change “Danville’s demographics and economic condition”, they can however change to perception and appearance of their shopping mall, both of which were pretty bad.

    Do you think that the renovations are going to make the chances of signing new tenants less likely?

    • That happens only in Bizarro

      One other questionable HSG decision was to not offer Sears a long-term lease in Martinsville’s Liberty Fair Mall. Sears quickly decided to shut down. It’s their call, but I don’t understand why HSG does what they do at times.

  • Sheila

    I do have to say that the mall looks more inviting….I like all the light. How they are going to keep the carpet clean is beyond me. I’m just waiting to see who comes and how much they bring with. Choice is a severe problem here, in that I can’t ever find the size we need, or the color we need, or the brand we want. Selection is very limited here and I expect that to continue. That is why I am likely to buy some here but go elsewhere for most of our shopping. I also don’t like the “parent with 17 & 18 year olds on the weekend” policy. My almost 17 year old is capable of going there any evening and buying clothes without me. She is beyond the age of wanting to go there just to hand out. Their policy will cost them money. Because of the policy and expected lack of selection, we will continue to shop in Greensboro, Raleigh, or on-line.

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