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  #41  
Old Posted Oct 22, 2022, 7:33 PM
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Originally Posted by homebucket View Post
The Bay Area might be unique in that I don’t think the suburbs have actually peaked yet. The suburbs here seem to be growing and expanding at a faster pace than its core city, SF, which is still struggling to recover from the pandemic especially with WFH. The suburbs are busier than ever and downtown SF is still remarkably sleepy. I saw something that said the suburban mall Santana Row has already surpassed its pre-pandemic activity levels. Valley Fair mall is expanding like crazy as well.

There’s currently 19.9 million square feet of vacant office space in SF and it’s continuing to grow as companies are starting to conduct layoffs and/or consolidate office space.
I never been to SF before the pandemic but North Beach and the Marina District seem to be pretty active. At least compared to downtown.
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  #42  
Old Posted Oct 22, 2022, 7:33 PM
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From 1960 to 1989, Salt Lake lost 29,518 people - or a little over 16% of its entire 1960 population.

The city sucked. Mo one wanted to live in it. There just wasn't a draw, especially for Mormons who had bigger families and wanted bigger homes, so, they moved out to the suburbs.

It's funny because my grandparents lived in the city their entire lives. But all their kids moved out to the suburbs - all but one: my mom. So, we were the only ones who lived in the city (1990s).
Glad you guys bucked the trend and stayed. That happened to my Dad's family with Toronto. Only 1 of 8 siblings still lives in the city limits. The rest are far off like 45-60 minutes or more away, with my Dad being the furthest at ~90 minutes drive.

I remember when SLC Punk came out or maybe a couple of years afterwards. That movie had a cult following in my generation (elder/geezer Millennials) and only was it then we realized that the area had such beautiful mountains and that even in Mormon heavy 80s Salt Lake City that there was this counter culture revolt
What's the Mormon percentage in the 2020s?
It helped put SLC on the map.
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  #43  
Old Posted Oct 22, 2022, 8:07 PM
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I don't know if suburbia or the city was at its peak, but the mall was. Some cities prospered, some didn't, some suburbs prospered, some didn't.

Was there such a thing as a declining mall in the 80s? Were there any?
Not around SoCal. Peak suburban mall culture was from the early 80s to the mid 90s. Both of these malls (Sherman Oaks Galleria and Del Amo Fashion Center) are still going strong though, defying national trends. Although in a sign of the times both have been partially converted to open-air malls.

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  #44  
Old Posted Oct 22, 2022, 9:21 PM
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Yea, I was just at Century City Westfield, it's like covid never happened.

Same for Topanga in the Valley.

LA malls are doing well actually.
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  #45  
Old Posted Oct 22, 2022, 10:37 PM
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Originally Posted by Segun View Post
I don't know if suburbia or the city was at its peak, but the mall was. Some cities prospered, some didn't, some suburbs prospered, some didn't.

Was there such a thing as a declining mall in the 80s? Were there any?
Dixie Square Mall in south suburban Chicago closed in 1978. It's the mall chase scene in the Blues Brothers.
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  #46  
Old Posted Oct 22, 2022, 11:07 PM
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Old Chicago was a gigantic combination shopping mall & indoor amusement park out in Bolingbrook that opened in 1975 and closed just 5 short years later in 1980. It was notable for having one of the first modern rollercoasters to go upside down, a first generation Arrow corkscrew model named The Chicago Loop.

It was the precursor to subsequent successful mall/amusement park hybrids like mall of America in the twin cities and west Edmonton mall.

After it's closing, the white elephant structure stood vacant for 6 years before it was finally demolished in 1986.



Source: https://negative-g.com/old-chicago-a...-beginning.htm
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Last edited by Steely Dan; Oct 22, 2022 at 11:30 PM.
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  #47  
Old Posted Oct 22, 2022, 11:13 PM
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Anyone remember this disaster? Open for less than a year. Featured in "Roger & Me"
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  #48  
Old Posted Oct 22, 2022, 11:55 PM
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Originally Posted by badrunner View Post
Not around SoCal. Peak suburban mall culture was from the early 80s to the mid 90s. Both of these malls (Sherman Oaks Galleria and Del Amo Fashion Center) are still going strong though, defying national trends. Although in a sign of the times both have been partially converted to open-air malls.
Actually, what today we call the Galleria is not the mall that was made famous by Fast Times at Ridgemont High and Valley Girl in the early 1980s. In fact, per Wikipedia, "The only remnant of the original mall is the court where the Pacific 16 Theatres is located, which are on the uppermost of what was previously the southern Robinsons-May store. The majority of the remaining mall was turned into offices." Also, there's a ton of restaurants there now.
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  #49  
Old Posted Oct 23, 2022, 2:43 AM
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Originally Posted by JManc View Post
I never been to SF before the pandemic but North Beach and the Marina District seem to be pretty active. At least compared to downtown.
The residential neighborhoods and their commercial corridors have definitely recovered more so than downtown.

And I think we’ve reached a steady state as far as how often workers are going into the office, so I think it’ll continue to be like this for the foreseeable future.
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  #50  
Old Posted Oct 23, 2022, 5:59 AM
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Yea, I was just at Century City Westfield, it's like covid never happened.

Same for Topanga in the Valley.

LA malls are doing well actually.
I live within walking distance of Topanga, and this mall seem to have kept up with the changes and is doing very well. Even during the pandemic there continued to be major upgrades to the center, they shut down a perfectly decent movie theater across the street from the village and put up a new luxury one along with an addition of new restaurants coming soon as well when the project is completed. The entire Warner Center is up for some major plans and investment. Not to mention all around the surrounding area are new luxury apartments going up everywhere in an area that was already built up. A lot of these new apartments looks like 5 and 6 stories hotels with brightly lit lobbies.

South Coast Plaza down in Orange County is another upscale mall that’s continued to stay current and keep the masses coming in. There have been some that died out in Southern California, but I think for the most part the LA area malls have been able to weathered the storms a bit better than the rest of the country. This is kind of a surprise because there has been a lot of streets around LA that has become popular destinations for hanging out and shopping, so there is a lot of competition here.
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  #51  
Old Posted Oct 23, 2022, 1:27 PM
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Originally Posted by Steely Dan View Post
Old Chicago was a gigantic combination shopping mall & indoor amusement park out in Bolingbrook that opened in 1975 and closed just 5 short years later in 1980. It was notable for having one of the first modern rollercoasters to go upside down, a first generation Arrow corkscrew model named The Chicago Loop.

It was the precursor to subsequent successful mall/amusement park hybrids like mall of America in the twin cities and west Edmonton mall.

After it's closing, the white elephant structure stood vacant for 6 years before it was finally demolished in 1986.



Source: https://negative-g.com/old-chicago-a...-beginning.htm
I can remember looking through old photographs my mom took when she was a teen in Chicagoland. One of them was her with a lion and photographs of an indoor amusement park. It was Old Chicago. I'm posting this from memory, from what she told me maybe 25+ years ago? Old amusement parks are a very interesting subject, so I was listening closely. It was a long drive-to destination (from her home in Evanston) and she described Old Chicago as in the middle-of-nowhere. I'm not sure if she was exaggerating or not? It was heavily advertised and the only amusement park in Chicagoland (Not sure if this is true or not? That sounds hard to believe!). If it was, that was its advantage when it opened. Visitors walk into the "mall," which was described as a Victorian main street. It was mostly small local businesses and no big mall anchors. She described a restaurant that allowed you to look down on the rides, but I don't remember what she said about it (restaurant) beyond that. From the mall, visitors walk down a long ramp into a midway of amusement park rides and circus performers. It was so loud you couldn't talk to the person next to you (don't know if this is exaggerating or not?). The back of the midway had a disco and they hosted a few concerts at Old Chicago. She said they cut corners building it and it would appear in the news with people getting hurt or something wrong with the building. Not long after it opened, Great America Theme Park opened, which was larger, safer, and better. This was likely the reason Old Chicago closed. She didn't seem to be impressed with Old Chicago.
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  #52  
Old Posted Oct 23, 2022, 2:56 PM
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There is something kind of Albert Speer about that photo. Second time as farce...
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  #53  
Old Posted Oct 23, 2022, 6:41 PM
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Originally Posted by Matthew View Post
It was a long drive-to destination (from her home in Evanston) and she described Old Chicago as in the middle-of-nowhere. I'm not sure if she was exaggerating or not?
From the perspective of someone in inner-ring Evanston in the mid-70s, Bolingbrook would've certainly felt like it was way the hell out there in the middle of nowhere. The 70s was bolingbrook's "explosive growth" decade when the great sprawl machine really took off there, growing the town from 7,000 people in 1970 to 37,000 people in 1980.




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It was heavily advertised and the only amusement park in Chicagoland (Not sure if this is true or not? That sounds hard to believe!).
The Northside of Chicago had one of the largest and best amusement parks around, named Riverview, from the early 20th century up until 1967 when it closed for good.

This left Chicagoland without a major amusement park until Old Chicago opened in '75, and the following summer, the far larger and more substantial Great America opened in the far northern suburbs in '76.

The local market was probably not robust enough to support two competing amusement parks all at once and that no doubt helped lead to Old Chicago's quick demise.





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Originally Posted by Matthew View Post
Visitors walk into the "mall," which was described as a Victorian main street. It was mostly small local businesses and no big mall anchors. She described a restaurant that allowed you to look down on the rides, but I don't remember what she said about it (restaurant) beyond that. From the mall, visitors walk down a long ramp into a midway of amusement park rides and circus performers. It was so loud you couldn't talk to the person next to you (don't know if this is exaggerating or not?). The back of the midway had a disco and they hosted a few concerts at Old Chicago. She said they cut corners building it and it would appear in the news with people getting hurt or something wrong with the building.
The link below is a great web resource with lots of old pictures, videos and memories of the short-lived Old Chicago mall/amusement park:

https://negative-g.com/old-chicago-a...park-index.htm
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Last edited by Steely Dan; Oct 24, 2022 at 2:22 PM.
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  #54  
Old Posted Oct 23, 2022, 10:24 PM
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I apologize for reposting the photograph.

I don't know if this is true or not, but it was interesting enough for me to remember it. I can remember visiting family in Chicago one summer and seeing a skyscraper rising-up in a suburban area with no other tall buildings around it (at that time). This was when I was starting to become interested in tall buildings and cities. I was told that was once a (posting from memory) large toy store in a castle with an amusement park around it. It would appear frequently in TV commercials and one day... it was just demolished to build that skyscraper. I would post a Street View of the location, but I don't remember where it was? If true, that is an interesting piece of amusement park history and it includes a skyscraper for the forum. You look for the tall building to find the former location of the amusement park. If only I could remember where it was. I'm guessing the view from the top is or was (at that time) amazing, since it was the only tall building in that area? I would imagine that (castle and amusement park) was a great way to sell a lot of toys. When visiting family up there, they always find interesting things about that city to share and they love sharing it.
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  #55  
Old Posted Oct 23, 2022, 10:34 PM
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South Coast Plaza down in Orange County is another upscale mall that’s continued to stay current and keep the masses coming in. There have been some that died out in Southern California, but I think for the most part the LA area malls have been able to weathered the storms a bit better than the rest of the country. This is kind of a surprise because there has been a lot of streets around LA that has become popular destinations for hanging out and shopping, so there is a lot of competition here.
LA area retail tends to do really well, and bounce back strong after a downturn. It's like Amazon doesn't exist here. Or people just look for any excuse to be out and about, even if they could be shopping online. F Jeff Bezos .
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  #56  
Old Posted Oct 23, 2022, 11:42 PM
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South Coast Plaza down in Orange County is another upscale mall that’s continued to stay current and keep the masses coming in. There have been some that died out in Southern California, but I think for the most part the LA area malls have been able to weathered the storms a bit better than the rest of the country. This is kind of a surprise because there has been a lot of streets around LA that has become popular destinations for hanging out and shopping, so there is a lot of competition here.
The remaining malls in LA are doing well because so many of their former competitors have bitten the dust. Del Amo in Torrance is still a going concern and was revamped a few years ago, though the end of mall anchored by the now shuttered Sears is decrepit. But up Hawthorne Blvd. from Del Amo, several other malls have been shuttered or downsized. The Hawthorne Mall is gone. Old Towne Mall in Torrance was an indoor mall but now has been repurposed as a plain strip mall. The South Bay Galleria where Redondo Beach, Lawndale and Torrance meet, was built in the mid-eighties with a 3 story arcade and 3 department stores. Now 2 of the department stores are gone and there are plans to replace part of the rest of the mall with apartments. This pattern has repeated all over LA County--Long Beach, Baldwin Hills, Pasadena, SF Valley, etc. In general, the less successful malls bite the dust leaving the survivors to divide the remaining shoppers between them.
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  #57  
Old Posted Oct 24, 2022, 12:42 AM
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The remaining malls in LA are doing well because so many of their former competitors have bitten the dust. Del Amo in Torrance is still a going concern and was revamped a few years ago, though the end of mall anchored by the now shuttered Sears is decrepit. But up Hawthorne Blvd. from Del Amo, several other malls have been shuttered or downsized. The Hawthorne Mall is gone. Old Towne Mall in Torrance was an indoor mall but now has been repurposed as a plain strip mall. The South Bay Galleria where Redondo Beach, Lawndale and Torrance meet, was built in the mid-eighties with a 3 story arcade and 3 department stores. Now 2 of the department stores are gone and there are plans to replace part of the rest of the mall with apartments. This pattern has repeated all over LA County--Long Beach, Baldwin Hills, Pasadena, SF Valley, etc. In general, the less successful malls bite the dust leaving the survivors to divide the remaining shoppers between them.
I did mentioned some malls have died, and others have moved on to become something else, such as mixed use development of apartments and retail. I just see those as changing with the times, and the majority of those locations are still functioning as retail, restaurants and entertainment. The only one that I can think that shut down is the Hawthorne Mall and a lot of that has to do with very bad mistakes in management and politics.

I doubt that Del Amo Mall will go away, I guarantee if they just look at the example of what Manhattan Beach Mall did, it would be the jewel of the South Bay again. I also don’t think the South Bay Galleria is going to be abandoned, I’ve seen it go through worse situations back in the late 70’s. Both Manhattan Beach and Redondo Beach have a lot going for it outside the malls, they have a thriving downtown and restaurant scene, yet the malls still did and do very well in spite of the beach culture entertainment just a mile or two away.

In the San Fernando Valley, some malls have changed, but the majority have weathered the recent storms as they have adapted to the changes. Glendale Galleria is just across the street from the very popular Americana retail/entertainment/apartments development and not to mentioned a very active downtown with Brand Blvd being the main attraction. This mall has definitely seem to be doing well, and I like the fact that it also feels as if it’s just an extension of The Americana, as the flow of pedestrians just blends outside to inside and on down to Glendale’s main downtown street Brand Blvd. Rick Caruso did a much better job on this project than the designed on the The Grove where it’s back is to the street on the west side of LA. The Sherman Oaks Mall also looks very healthy, and also looks as though it bounced back from the pandemic.

Northridge was looking a bit down a few years ago, but not in danger of closing and at the same time I was seeing updates being done to the complex. As of late there has been a lot of development of luxury apartments surrounding that mall. I also don’t think the well to do neighborhoods surrounding the mall will allow it to go down hill. There would be no other spots close by to shop other than Porter Ranch, or all the way across the Valley to my neighborhood where the Topanga Mall is.

North Hollywood had a failed Mall, Laurel Plaza /Valley Plaza. but there is something new in the area that has replaced it (NoHo West) again with retail, restaurants and luxury apartments.

Overall I still believe LA malls still in good shape compared to other cities around the country.

Last edited by ChrisLA; Oct 24, 2022 at 3:15 AM.
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  #58  
Old Posted Oct 24, 2022, 1:25 AM
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The remaining malls in LA are doing well because so many of their former competitors have bitten the dust. Del Amo in Torrance is still a going concern and was revamped a few years ago, though the end of mall anchored by the now shuttered Sears is decrepit. But up Hawthorne Blvd. from Del Amo, several other malls have been shuttered or downsized. The Hawthorne Mall is gone. Old Towne Mall in Torrance was an indoor mall but now has been repurposed as a plain strip mall. The South Bay Galleria where Redondo Beach, Lawndale and Torrance meet, was built in the mid-eighties with a 3 story arcade and 3 department stores. Now 2 of the department stores are gone and there are plans to replace part of the rest of the mall with apartments. This pattern has repeated all over LA County--Long Beach, Baldwin Hills, Pasadena, SF Valley, etc. In general, the less successful malls bite the dust leaving the survivors to divide the remaining shoppers between them.
Well to be fair that would make it four(!) malls in a six mile stretch of Hawthorne blvd, along with all the other big box stores, stripmalls and traditional retail there. That's too many even for LA, but that just drives home the point about the density of retail around here. It was the smaller ones that bit the dust, like tiny Hawthorne Plaza and Old Towne Mall (which wasn't even a real mall to begin with). I'm not aware of any full-size malls that have closed around here. Around the metro there are probably some, but there are dozens more that are still open. They've definitely fallen out of favor though. No one would build a new indoor mall. They'd go with an open-air concept like Irvine Spectrum or Newport Center. But I still have a soft spot for indoor malls .
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  #59  
Old Posted Oct 24, 2022, 1:32 AM
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Not to mention the sheer amount of retail all over the area that's on regular throughfares.

When Fox news or whatever was talking about these business closing I was like 'where?" Most of them survived covid.
Such stupid right wing crap.
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  #60  
Old Posted Oct 24, 2022, 1:37 AM
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LA area retail tends to do really well, and bounce back strong after a downturn. It's like Amazon doesn't exist here. Or people just look for any excuse to be out and about, even if they could be shopping online. F Jeff Bezos .
That's my guess too. People here like actually going out to these stores etc.

I wondered how independent retail was surving on Ventura even during the height of covid and I guess they still had enough people walking in.
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