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Struggling Malls Can Mean Struggling Communities

This isn't something that gets explored often, but it's a good point. This CNN piece talks about how when a mall struggles, it can take a toll on the surrounding community.

But a challenging economic and competitive climate has crippled business - and the 32-year-old shopping center, once the largest enclosed mall in the greater Cleveland area, is closing. The current weakness in consumer spending, which has stymied retail sales nationwide, finally forced the mall to shut down.

Cuyahoga County Commissioner Peter Lawson Jones said the once-booming mall had been struggling for a decade.

"When the mall and the (nearby Thistledown) racetrack were booming, the community had more money than it could stand," Jones said.

Besides jobs, he said the village's residents also depended on revenue from the mall to fund basic services such as security and free snow plowing for senior citizens.

Now, the demise of the mall and sluggish patronage at the racetrack have almost put the village of North Randall on "deathwatch," Jones said.

Link.

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