April 07, 2008

Springfield Mall - WTF?

What the hell is going on at Springfield Mall? I was at the mall on Sunday afternoon, and it appeared that large swaths of the mall were closed off. Stores and eateries were walled off with drywall, and even the movie theater was closed. I checked their website this morning, and there was no information at all. If you live in Northern Virginia, you may be wondering whether it's a sign of the economic times, or just a case of suburban blight. In fact, with some of the goings-on in the past year at the mall, I could easily imagine vendors jumping ship. When gun-play comes to your local shopping center, it's easy to figure that stores may wish to relocate.

But a little birdie told me something big is cooking at the mall. A major renovation is planned for Springfield Mall, with upscale stores planned for the renovations, although I didn't get any specifics from my singing friend. Perhaps the 'upscale' target is to fight off the image that Springfield Mall may be getting after the shooting incident. I was told that some stores are being forced out of the mall, while others are being given the opportunity to relocate. In fact, my favorite barber shop was relocated upstairs next to J.C. Penney's.

A quick call to the Springfield Mall contact number got a little bit more information. Planning meetings are apparently being held with local community groups, most likely the Springfield Chamber of Commerce at a minimum. The renovations will begin after some more stores are relocated to one side of the mall, and this should be happening in the next few months. They have also told me that a new website will be launched with information about the renovations soon. While the person I spoke to was unsure about whether it'd be linked to their main site, I suspect it will.

If you're a shopper, or you just live in the area and were curious as to what is going on, now you know.

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