<Rolling Aires Mall, abandoned, AKRON, Ohio, New York Times> Scattered across Canada and the United States are thousands of defunct shopping malls – fortunately many more there, than here.
<Boarded up Zellers store at the mall, AMHERST, Nova Scotia, photo – Ross Winter> KATE FOLK, writing in the New York Times magazine believes “no other category offers the spectacle of modern ruin on such a horrifying scale: the scars of familiar logos on storefronts, the desiccated planters, the sheer volume of emptiness and waste . . . a once-beloved edifice that, in the space of a few years has become so worthless no one even cares enough to tear it down.”
<Bayside Mall, formerly the Eaton Centre, SARNIA, Ontario, photo – seanmarshall.ca> Ms.Folk unwinds late at night “by watching tours of dead and dying shopping malls on YouTube.” She says “there are two basic types. The first explores a mall that is still open, though the end is evidently nigh – the retail equivalent of a sinking ship. Then there are the tours of malls that have already been shut down and abandoned, often for years – deep sea footage from within the moldering shipwreck.”
<Mall debris, VIRGINIA> But fortunately there are exceptions – many shopping malls are going strong. YORKDALE in TORONTO is thriving – more these days than ever before. Part of its success no doubt comes from a longtime connection to the city’s subway network.
The WEST EDMONTON MALL, North America’s largest, boasts over 800 stores and services, 9 attractions, 2 hotels and over 100 places to eat and drink. There’s parking for 20,000 vehicles, and it’s visited by 32-million annually.