View Full Version : Heritage Park Mall officially closing



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muzique808
01-24-2010, 12:44 AM
Story on NewsOK:

NewsOK (http://newsok.com/heritage-park-malls-tenants-to-leave-by-feb.-15/article/3434300?custom_click=lead_story_title)

Thunder
01-24-2010, 01:05 AM
It's really sad that this had to happen. I blame the people for the demise. Less shoppers bring in less money and this is what we get. Retailers leaving and they had done that. The city officials did nothing, not a single attempt, to revive the mall. Personally, I prefer the indoor mall rather than constantly moving my car at the new Town Plaza.

People can whine and put out blames all they want, but in the end, these ex-shoppers are the ones to be blamed. Your fault. Don't use it, lose it.

I see ZERO benefit for Life Church to buy Dillard's space. They're not using it. The space remains empty and it is pathetic. Life Church is evil and that is my final decision.

I know that Sears own their portion of the building, but I would rather see them move to the new Del City shopping strip. If they would just fork over the money to pay for their own building and only to pay for land lease (unless they can buy the land), they would see more traffic, even tho they rake in good profit at the old building.

TaoMaas
01-24-2010, 05:32 AM
Personally, I prefer the indoor mall rather than constantly moving my car at the new Town Plaza.

I agree. I'm relatively new to the Midwest City area so I wasn't that familiar with Heritage Park Mall's past, but the NewsOK article said that there used to be a movie theater located in the mall. I wish they would revive that. I'd like to have a theater closer to home. We could also use a good bookstore.

andimthomas
01-24-2010, 08:30 AM
My dad owned a dollar store in the mall for a while. I remember going there after school everyday. Sad to see it close.

ddavidson8
01-24-2010, 08:47 AM
There was a three screen in the mall, as well as a 5 screen across the street. It's really sad that this had to happen.

TaoMaas
01-24-2010, 09:05 AM
I firmly believe that MWC is the next happenin' thing. The property prices will make it so, just they did with Edmond and Moore.

Redskin 70
01-24-2010, 10:04 AM
Such an absolute shame and waste of valuable space.
Glad to see at least the Sears is staying.:whiteflag

Thunder
01-24-2010, 12:46 PM
Yeah, I've been to the theater in the mall several time and the one across the street was where I saw the Titanic.

oneforone
01-24-2010, 03:04 PM
Mall management is doing these businesses a favor by closing. I shopped the GameStop store a few times over the last few months. Each time there were more employees then anything else. Most of the people in there were mall walkers. Anybody with a reasonable amount of business since would have closed this place down months or years ago.

The mom and pop businesses will have no trouble finding affordable space to rent throughout Midwest City and Del City. I have a feeling most will move to Crossroads. The Hot Spot that was in Heritage Park took over the old Sbarro at Crossroads.

I noticed they are remodeling the space in between Aarons and Party Galaxy Across the street. I am wondering if GNC is going to move there?

I think the mall's retail days are over. I think Midwest City should find a developer that will buy out Sears and Lifechurch. They could divide the land up and use it for new housing, office space, and maybe even a new school or two. After that they could pursue tearing down the old Wal-Mart and Albertson's stores and replace the stores with a large movie theater.

rcjunkie
01-24-2010, 04:38 PM
It's really sad that this had to happen. I blame the people for the demise. Less shoppers bring in less money and this is what we get. Retailers leaving and they had done that. The city officials did nothing, not a single attempt, to revive the mall. Personally, I prefer the indoor mall rather than constantly moving my car at the new Town Plaza.
People can whine and put out blames all they want, but in the end, these ex-shoppers are the ones to be blamed. Your fault. Don't use it, lose it.

I see ZERO benefit for Life Church to buy Dillard's space. They're not using it. The space remains empty and it is pathetic. Life Church is evil and that is my final decision.

I know that Sears own their portion of the building, but I would rather see them move to the new Del City shopping strip. If they would just fork over the money to pay for their own building and only to pay for land lease (unless they can buy the land), they would see more traffic, even tho they rake in good profit at the old building.

With the exception of limitations due to a handicap, why must you constantly move your car while shopping at an open air plaza/shopping center ?
Why not shop and get in a workout at the same time.

Wambo36
01-24-2010, 05:01 PM
I have to say the practical side of me knew this was coming, but the sentimental side finds it to be very sad. I remember when it was an outstanding shopping mall and spent a ton of time shopping and hanging out there.
I still miss the original pizza place where they hand tossed the dough. Still some of the best pizza I've eaten. Used to walk by the fabric store with my buddies and eyeball my future wife when she worked there (she says I was stalking her). Prettiest girl I'd ever seen. Still took 3 years to start dating.
During Christmas shopping season you could see friends you hadn't seen since the last Chistmas season and get re-aquainted. Lots of good memories. Very sad.

Lauri101
01-24-2010, 06:14 PM
And now the spot will go full circle - I can remember when that spot was a great place for dirt biking!

Although I haven't been to Heritage since Dillards and bookstore closed, it does make me sad. I used to take my daughters there to shop for school clothes. We were able to stay all morning and shop, plus eat lunch at El Chico and go to an afternoon movie.

Don't blame the shoppers, Thunder - blame the mall management or lack thereof! They raised rents on loyal tenants but refused to provide adequate security for shoppers. Maintenance was non-existent and no deep cleaning was done. The new guy purchased the property well before the recession but failed to act while he could reap benefits.

Sears needs to move - either to Del City or to Town Center or even at Sooner and 29th area. Raze Heritage and go for mixed use - the building would cost more to re-hab than to tear down and start over, IMHO!

kay
01-24-2010, 08:37 PM
I have great memories of the mall since we grew up in that neighborhood. I remember riding our bikes in that field. But even better are the times when Granny took me shopping for school clothes like Levi's, green overalls and OP shirts. She liked to eat at a German place. For some reason the name Ingrid's Kitchen comes to mind. Not sure if it's the same one that exists now. My Grandpa bought my first real ring at Service Merchandise and he liked to eat there at a steak/ hamburger place where you ordered over the phone. Really wish I could remember the names of these places. Is there a record of all the stores that went in and out? Oh! And I watched my first movies there without my parents. My friends and I went to see Indiana Jones (the one with all the spiders and snakes). It scared the crap out of us when we had to walk home through the parking lot with a hoard of grasshoppers and cicadas "attacking" us. Star Wars, E.T., all the best of them were seen right there. I'm not a fan of change but it's time for something great in that spot. Let's hope for a movie theater!

kay
01-24-2010, 08:43 PM
Olga's Kitchen! That was the name.

Oh GAWD the Smell!
01-25-2010, 01:13 AM
I'm glad Sears is staying open...I hate driving all the way to 44th and Western every time I break a wrench or need a new valve spring compressor.

bombermwc
01-25-2010, 12:42 PM
Now, can the city manage to do something so the place doesnt just sit growing grass in the parking lot and more storm damage tears more roof off. We need to get the place dozed. GNC and Sears are the only things I went to in there...hopefully as you say, GNC will move across the street. Then I can pull up to the place and not have to walk through the creepy unlit mall to get to the store.

It's been a good couple of decades since the place was worth anything. Think about Dillard's for example. Then the origional carpet from 1971 still exists in the 90's....you've got a problem. They never had anything because it was so small. And once Service Merchandise and Ward's went belly-up...it was all downhill from there.

Honestly, I can't say I'll miss a thing. Year of mismanagement and absolutely no effort to maintain the place were its downfall. Simon owned it at one time and they didn't hide the fact that they took the money they earned at Heritage and put it into the remodel of Penn. Good business for Simon since they sold off not long after, but horrible business for MWC and Heritage.

OKC@heart
01-25-2010, 03:26 PM
As with all things it is a dissapointment to see things that were and that gave us a sense of place replite with fond memories end. But this type of building has a shelf life, and I expect that we will see this cycle over and over.

It may be that the vacant mall can provide a site for a future well planned development. It is uncertain what that will be but it can be a tremendous opportunity, but in the meanwhile a vacant building of that size with a large ammount of parking lot around does nothing to benefit the community of which it is a part, from a perception standpoint as well as a safety one.

I hope the city and the economic developers move this to thier highest priority.

oneforone
01-26-2010, 02:12 AM
MIDWEST CITY, OK -- A once bustling Midwest City mall is about to close its doors for good. Heritage Park Mall, at the corner of Reno and Air Depot, opened more than 30 years ago. The mall's California based owner has now informed the few remaining tenants they have until February 15 to move out.

Heritage Park Mall had been up for sale for several months, but the owner never found a taker for the $3.7 million price tag.

Recently the mall had been cited by the city for falling into disrepair.

Midwest City's mayor says the city has talked with numerous developers about reusing the property, though it may not end up being retail in the future.

"I don't think there's a need for 800,000 square-feet of retail property here. In my opinion, it probably has to be re-developed," said Mayor Russell Smith.

Because Sears owns its part of the building, the department store will stay open even after the rest of the mall closes.


Heritage Park Mall to close - KFOR (http://www.kfor.com/news/local/kfor-news-heritage-mall-closing-story,0,862818.story)

so1rfan
01-26-2010, 07:19 AM
That whole stretch of Reno has been going downhill business-wise for some time. Started with the demise of K-Mart, then Circuit City. Pep Boys is gone, they never rebuilt the Captain D's after it burned, the car audio store (Audio Midwest?) closed, I think the Popeyes closed, Eyemart, etc. I am sure there are more but I rarely go that way.

CuatrodeMayo
01-26-2010, 08:24 AM
Reno at Midwest is now a ghosttown too.

bombermwc
01-26-2010, 09:21 AM
OK, people get on this rant, and i dont understand it.

Pepboys went bankrupt. It had nothing to do with the productivity of the store.

Popey's is now Basil - which is successful.

Captain D's is now a much nicer insurance office.

K-Mart is Anthony's and that tinting place

Circuit City is Goodwill and the other businesses are still there in that center.

So tell me where exactlly the ghost town is on Reno. All of the stores that closed have something in them now and are open. Audio Midwest closed after the buyers failed. Not a big deal to have a small metal building store closed down though IMO. I thought it had turned into something else even after that though...some sports thing.

Reno/Midwest has 2 buildings that are empty...remember (for the billionth time) the hospital owns the target building and are going to develop it in their phased expansion project....phase 1 is going on right now...target is phase 3.

So out of all of MWC all that's empty is an old Albertson's and Wal-Mart.

I don't really consider that too shabby folks...especially in these fun economic times with so many businesses failing...and 29th relocating so much of the dollars.

HPM is large enough to become a whole new development...new homes would be perfect. There are several new home developments 1/2 mile from there, so it's not as though there isn't a demand in the area.

AAC2005
01-26-2010, 11:27 AM
every time I break a wrench

Every time you break a CRAFTSMAN wrench?! Remind me never to shake hands with you - I might not get it back.:bow:

Oh GAWD the Smell!
01-27-2010, 04:30 AM
I break Snap-On and Craftsman all the time.

Well, not ALL the time, but it's not uncommon. I broke a 50 year old 6" jawed bench vise (weighs about 50 lbs) a couple of years ago. I can break almost any tool if given the right project! I've broken two valve spring compressors in the last year. But I made my own this time and it's about 9 times faster and I doubt it'll ever break.

And bombermwc...Audio Midwest didn't go broke. A storm in '06-'07 sometime collapsed their roof, and when repairs were taking too long, they just closed it for good and moved all their car audio to their Edmond store, which used to be primarily home theater/audio.

MonkeesFan
01-27-2010, 05:45 AM
That really sucks it is closing! I have not been there in 3 years

Thunder
01-27-2010, 06:24 AM
I haven't been in there for longer than 3 years. I say the last time I was there was shopping for an aunt's birthday. I guess... 5 years? Maybe more. lol

MonkeesFan
01-27-2010, 06:27 AM
I haven't been in there for longer than 3 years. I say the last time I was there was shopping for an aunt's birthday. I guess... 5 years? Maybe more. lol

You should go back and see the mall one last time before it closes, I am thinking of going there on Friday to see one last time and maybe I will remember some stores that used to be there

Thunder
01-27-2010, 06:41 AM
It's depressing. Would I really want to go into a depressing place. It's gonna make me cry. :-(

MonkeesFan
01-27-2010, 06:55 AM
It's depressing. Would I really want to go into a depressing place. It's gonna make me cry. :-(

Good point but I did have good memories going there!

Thunder
01-27-2010, 06:59 AM
Me, too. *cries*

Lauri101
01-27-2010, 06:05 PM
I think I'll go over this weekend and take some pictures. Both my daughters live out of town and they are sad they can't go one more time.

If you see an old fat gal takin' pictures, that might be me:dizzy:

mmonroe
01-28-2010, 12:34 PM
LifeChurch is EVIL!! pos

stratosphere
01-28-2010, 03:30 PM
I still miss the original pizza place where they hand tossed the dough. Still some of the best pizza I've eaten.

i believe that was La Pizza. It was great eating a slice (or two) and watching Radiers of the Lost Ark on their big screen tv they had in there, funny all of the people that would get beer in a cup and hang out and watch movies. I was too young for the beer back then. We also used to go to the arcade next to La Pizza and play Pac Man or whatever game of the moment. Also saw Empire Strikes Back in that mall, along with Jedi and Temple of Doom. The 80's, and being a little kid in that big mall, was really kinda fun.

Bostonfan
01-28-2010, 03:39 PM
I think I'll go over this weekend and take some pictures. Both my daughters live out of town and they are sad they can't go one more time.

If you see an old fat gal takin' pictures, that might be me:dizzy:

Please try and post them if you can. Also, anyone know of any old pictures of the mall are out there, say 80's?

Bostonfan
01-28-2010, 03:43 PM
i believe that was La Pizza. It was great eating a slice (or two) and watching Radiers of the Lost Ark on their big screen tv they had in there, funny all of the people that would get beer in a cup and hang out and watch movies. I was too young for the beer back then. We also used to go to the arcade next to La Pizza and play Pac Man or whatever game of the moment. Also saw Empire Strikes Back in that mall, along with Jedi and Temple of Doom. The 80's, and being a little kid in that big mall, was really kinda fun.

Great memories. I remember getting a slice, sitting down, and watching the Rocky movies on that big screen they had.

Soonerus
01-28-2010, 08:01 PM
The City moved its interest to the 29th Street "re-development" and abandoned the mall and further, the mall is also not ideally located...malls are not "in" anymore, thus failure...

bombermwc
01-29-2010, 09:48 AM
I don't think anyone here would argue that it's the city's fault that the mall crapped out. It was on it's way down the toilet LOOOONG before 29th started....or they even started buying up land for it. Poor management and lack of investment in the property doomed it long ago. Remember that there isn't a single store on 29th that was in HPM so it's not as though they stole the actual store....the stores just went away.

And you are correct, malls just aren't "in" anymore. Our lazy fat selfs want to park outside the door of a store and walk in, not have to walk through a mall to get to it. That's an ongoing rant of mine to see people move their car on 29th st. instead of walk from one store to the next. I've walkd from Kohls to Lowe's plenty times. You park around Best Buy and haul around...sunshine/exercise/not lazy fart.

It's unfortunate that malls took that turn though. The self-contained shopping experience isn't met in a strip mall (and 29th is just a fancy version of one). I'd still take a mall over outdoors, but that's me...and apparently I'm in the minority.

smooth
01-29-2010, 03:55 PM
I don't think anyone here would argue that it's the city's fault that the mall crapped out. It was on it's way down the toilet LOOOONG before 29th started....or they even started buying up land for it. Poor management and lack of investment in the property doomed it long ago. Remember that there isn't a single store on 29th that was in HPM so it's not as though they stole the actual store....the stores just went away.

And you are correct, malls just aren't "in" anymore. Our lazy fat selfs want to park outside the door of a store and walk in, not have to walk through a mall to get to it. That's an ongoing rant of mine to see people move their car on 29th st. instead of walk from one store to the next. I've walkd from Kohls to Lowe's plenty times. You park around Best Buy and haul around...sunshine/exercise/not lazy fart.

It's unfortunate that malls took that turn though. The self-contained shopping experience isn't met in a strip mall (and 29th is just a fancy version of one). I'd still take a mall over outdoors, but that's me...and apparently I'm in the minority.

I don't see how Heritage Park's closing is the city's fault. Many cities build strip centers and shopping areas and can still have a successful mall. Just look at Norman as an example. Plus the investment and management are not the city's fault. The blame should be on the property owners.

bombermwc
02-01-2010, 07:16 AM
Um, that's exactlly what I was saying...that it was the property owners, not the city.....

Redskin 70
02-01-2010, 12:51 PM
Um, that's exactlly what I was saying...that it was the property owners, not the city.....

I agree whole heartedly.
THe mall changed hands to many times, each time a a financial investment.
The structure became old and the infrastructure became to expensixe to maintain, fix or upgrade so they stopped putting money into it.

The City had nothing to do with it.:woowoo:

oneforone
02-06-2010, 07:11 PM
Citi Trends will be moving into the space between Party Galaxy and Aarons. The signs were installed today on the building.

The funnything about it is they have not even moved into the building and a "Grand Opening Sale Today" sign is already on the building. You would think that would come after the move in. I will note that the stores interior is complete so they may be moving in today and opening in the next few days.


http://www.cititrends.com/index.html

bombermwc
02-06-2010, 09:01 PM
Makes me wonder where GNC is going to go. I'm in there enough that I'd rather go to that one than the one on 240 because of distance. But at the same time, you can almost always get the same thing online for cheaper...but those "don't want to wait 3 days" times make GNC convenient enough to pay it. There are so many places they could move to, so I hope they don't leave MWC all together. They've enjoyed a rock bottom lease for so long at HPM, it will be a shocker to them no matter where they go. Air Depot seems the natural place since that's where the gyms are.

oneforone
02-06-2010, 10:26 PM
I noticed today that Hollywood Video on Reno is finally closing. I was wondering how much longer they would hold out because I never see any traffic at that store.

Lauri101
02-07-2010, 10:54 AM
Not surprised about Hollywood. We haven't gone to a store to rent a movie for years. Cox On Demand is about the same price when you factor in convenience and drive time, etc.

kay
02-07-2010, 07:08 PM
Yesterday the guys at Blockbuster said their business really picked up when Hollywood closed. "Doubled" was their description of it. I think they had more business then you think.

Thunder
02-07-2010, 08:50 PM
Yeah, Hollywood did have steady business there.

bombermwc
02-08-2010, 09:56 AM
Well the nice part about them closing is now that entire corner is free if someone wants to buy it all up. Carl's Jr. is nothing in comparison to the rest of the lots....and you know they do poor business and would love to be bought out. There are so many things that COULD go in there, but the question is, will someone do it.

Becka
02-08-2010, 06:00 PM
I don't think it's the people's fault for not shopping there or the city's fault. The blame lies soley in the jackhole that owns it. I used to work in the mall and I remember when he bought it and long-term tenants started skipping out in the middle of the night because he jacked up the rent so high that they couldn't afford to stay.

He wouldn't maintain the place at all. Lights were out, several of the stores didn't have heat or air and they did no repairs. He didn't even run the a/c in the summer in the mall common areas. If you went into a store with air, it was a bigger tenant who had separate units and paid their own bills.

People stopped going there because there wasn't anything left in the mall to keep them coming back. I suspect the only reason the stores that stayed did is because they were still locked into a lease.

decepticobra
02-11-2010, 12:03 PM
OK, people get on this rant, and i dont understand it.

Pepboys went bankrupt. It had nothing to do with the productivity of the store.

Popey's is now Basil - which is successful.

Captain D's is now a much nicer insurance office.

K-Mart is Anthony's and that tinting place

Circuit City is Goodwill and the other businesses are still there in that center.

.

basically every national business you mentioned has become some sort of private local business or something mom & pop.

by your analogy, HPM was still successful AFTER all of its various national chain stores closed up shop and were replaced by stores selling cheap imported urban apparel, fake jewelry, cell phone accessories, and nik-nak stores.

decepticobra
02-11-2010, 12:07 PM
I noticed today that Hollywood Video on Reno is finally closing. I was wondering how much longer they would hold out because I never see any traffic at that store.

you can blame redbox and netflix for that.

db411
02-12-2010, 09:12 PM
I stopped by the mall this evening to try to take a few photos. Unfortunately, it was too dark to get any good photos with my old digital camera. If anyone decides to go, take a camera that can take good low light photos!

Here are a few shots from my Photobucket album (http://s487.photobucket.com/albums/rr231/db411/HPM/):



West Courtyard looking toward old Radio Shack
http://i487.photobucket.com/albums/rr231/db411/HPM/02_WestCourt1.jpg

Theater Box Office
http://i487.photobucket.com/albums/rr231/db411/HPM/04_BoxOffice.jpg

Looking East from near the Bookstore
http://i487.photobucket.com/albums/rr231/db411/HPM/05_WestCenter.jpg

Center Courtyard looking South
http://i487.photobucket.com/albums/rr231/db411/HPM/10_CenterCourt.jpg



I was amazed at what poor condition the mall was in. I had not been in the actual mall (not counting Sears) since the bookstore closed. I had always imagined there was a chance that it could be redeveloped into something but my visit today dashed those hopes. There is water damage in several parts of the mall. A piece of drywall maybe 2 sft in size was hanging perilously in front of Wards. The mold growing in one of the windows (I think it was a Finish Line or Foot Locker at one time it was across and down the hall from the theater) was just shocking to see. It was also sort of creepy to hear the creaking of the skylights above the courtyard areas. I bet they always did that but with it so quiet in the mall it was very apparent. You could gut it as the structure is probably in decent condition but by the time you replace the roofing, insulation, drywall, and building systems (electrical/HVAC) it might be just as easy to start from scratch. Of course, after all that work I think the only real option for redevelopment right now would be offices. Retail or a theater is not going to want to be that far from the highway.

Thunder
02-12-2010, 11:00 PM
Even the plants is dying. :-(

oneforone
02-20-2010, 01:57 AM
I think if Sears moved, you would see some real progress for that area. I think it would make a nice area for a third high school for Mid-Del Schools, an office park, new housing or even new city park.

decepticobra
02-20-2010, 02:45 AM
Retail or a theater is not going to want to be that far from the highway.

...but, retail and a theatre (2 theatres for that matter) was doing quite well in that spot during the mid 80s up to the mid 90s. roughly 10 years when both theatres coexisted.

so what really attributed to the death of heritage park, and subsequently crossroads? was it a decline in the overall national economy? the impact of general motors closing (this is what i primarily view as the cause), or some other factors?

oh well...looks like we can soon add heritage park and crossroads to the long register of dead malls at deadmalls DOT com (http://www.deadmalls.com)

smooth
02-20-2010, 03:47 PM
...but, retail and a theatre (2 theatres for that matter) was doing quite well in that spot during the mid 80s up to the mid 90s. roughly 10 years when both theatres coexisted.

so what really attributed to the death of heritage park, and subsequently crossroads? was it a decline in the overall national economy? the impact of general motors closing (this is what i primarily view as the cause), or some other factors?

oh well...looks like we can soon add heritage park and crossroads to the long register of dead malls at deadmalls DOT com (http://www.deadmalls.com)

Crossroads was dying well before GM closed. As many of us, me included, have said and tried to drill into the people wearing blinders, the biggest reasons are lack of updating and gang activity. Most people do not want to be near known gang areas. Plus, some freeway construction near Crossroads (widening of I-35) killed traffic. Heritage Park? Probably similar reasons. Plus that area (also Crossroads) are now for the most part, dumps.

kevinpate
02-20-2010, 05:08 PM
Crossroads was dying well before GM closed. As many of us, me included, have said and tried to drill into the people wearing blinders, the biggest reasons are lack of updating and gang activity. Most people do not want to be near known gang areas. Plus, some freeway construction near Crossroads (widening of I-35) killed traffic. Heritage Park? Probably similar reasons. Plus that area (also Crossroads) are now for the most part, dumps.

Might be wrong, but if memory serves well, I believe if one pulled news stories involving guns, assaults, robberies, attempted or completed car jackings at metro malls over the last 5 years, Neither Crossroads nor Heritage would be at the top of the list.

Both do have viability issues, but the malls which offer many, many more targets see more criminal activity. Imagine that.

smooth
02-20-2010, 09:18 PM
Might be wrong, but if memory serves well, I believe if one pulled news stories involving guns, assaults, robberies, attempted or completed car jackings at metro malls over the last 5 years, Neither Crossroads nor Heritage would be at the top of the list.

Both do have viability issues, but the malls which offer many, many more targets see more criminal activity. Imagine that.

Like I said... Blinders. Wake up!

Redskin 70
02-21-2010, 07:41 AM
regardless of the perceived cause of demise..............30 year old infrastructure, constantly changing ownership, changing demographics, and shopping styles are the result of both malls falling to the wayside......:poke:

db411
02-24-2010, 09:46 PM
...but, retail and a theatre (2 theatres for that matter) was doing quite well in that spot during the mid 80s up to the mid 90s. roughly 10 years when both theatres coexisted.

so what really attributed to the death of heritage park, and subsequently crossroads? was it a decline in the overall national economy? the impact of general motors closing (this is what i primarily view as the cause), or some other factors?


I think the biggest factor in the failure of Heritage Park and Crossroads was the major shift in how people shop. While most “big box” and “category killer” retailers had their origin in or before the 1980s, there proliferation in the 1990s is what doomed most department stores such as Wards and Service Merchandise. As people became more and more “discount” oriented, higher end stores suffered. Not only did malls face the loss of their anchor stores, but the low volume in-line specialty stores faced stiff competition from their high volume stand-alone competitors. This was hardly a local phenomenon, but a national trend.

I did a bit of research into this over a year ago. The chart below shows the number of malls that were opened (in green) verses the number that were closed (red) over the past five decades in the major cities of North TX, OK, KS, and CO.
http://i487.photobucket.com/albums/rr231/db411/mallsgraph.jpg
Several of the malls that were closed were destroyed and redeveloped into open-air lifestyle or power centers like MWC’s Town Center. I believe there were three that were partially redeveloped as office complexes and at least one that was torn down and replaced with an office park.

I wanted to dig a little deeper and compared the location of big box/category killer stores with the relative success or failure of the malls. Now, I could not go and visit all of the malls to get an accurate occupancy rate so I had to rely on a somewhat unscientific method that used internet sites such as deadmalls.com, labelscar.com, newspapers, and the mall websites (which were not as up-to-date as I would have liked). I ended up with three broad classifications, malls that were approximately 70-100% occupied (28), malls that were approximately 30-70% occupied (17), and those that were approximately 0-30% occupied (9). The mall sites that were already redeveloped were excluded. I looked at the area within .75 miles of mall and calculated the average number of big box/category killer stores within that zone for each of the three occupancy classifications. For the 70-100% malls there were 8.3 big box/category killer stores, for the 30-70% malls there were 4.5 big box/category killer stores, and for the 0-30% malls there were 0.3 big box/category killer stores within .75 miles. So it seems that having some of the competition nearby can help a mall survive, just look at the malls in OKC for an example - all the big box retail stores by Penn Square and Quail Springs vs Crossroads (Best Buy and Toys R Us) and Heritage Park (Office Depot and a closed Circuit City).

Of course, there are also several other factors that have hurt Heritage Park and Crossroads. Demographics, specifically those that relate to income, have a lot to do with where retail stores locate. (GM closing does play a small role in this too – lower incomes and fewer workers.) Eastern OKC as a whole and especially the area around Crossroads are not the high income areas of the city. (Duh!) You can blame both Dillards (both malls) and Macy’s (Crossroads) departures almost entirely on this factor not to mention many other smaller high-end inline stores (did either mall ever even have a Sharper Image?). Another big problem for Heritage Park has been the succession of absentee land lords as others have said.

You also need to consider the nearby competing retail (lifestyle/power) centers especially with thinking about potential redevelopment. Heritage Park was a very local mall, drawing its customers from primarily from Mid-Del and partly from Spencer and Choctaw-NP-Harrah. Back in the 80s and 90s Reno was the major focus of retail but now it is the I-40 corridor, Town Center and whatever else develops in Del City. The mall site is going to be a hard sell to most national retailers as long as there is room on the highway. Unlike Heritage Park, Crossroads had a much larger market area. The eastern part of their market has been taken over by Town Center (after Best Buy and Penny’s opened) and the southern portion was lost to the new developments in Moore (with another Best Buy and Penny’s) on I-35 and SW 19. If Crossroads had attracted some of the developments on 240 and the Target and or Sears on 44th, it might have had a shot at surviving as a more locally oriented retail center. But now having to compete with those stores for the western and NW part of their market area (basically leaving the mall with Valley Brook as its market area) there is little hope left. The big holdup as far as redevelopment options go is the size of the mall, as it is one of the largest in the entire region.

By the way, deadmalls.com is an interesting site but I have found labelscar.com to offer a bit more in the way of in-depth discussion and analysis. Here are their write-ups on Heritage Park (http://www.labelscar.com/oklahoma/heritage-park-mall) and Crossroads (http://www.labelscar.com/oklahoma/crossroads-mall-okc).

bombermwc
02-25-2010, 08:05 AM
That is the reason right there....the move of shopping OUT of malls. Heritage did have a number of management groups that sucked the life out of the place, but it's not like it's ever been a huge draw anyway. The anchors are small compared to other malls so they didn't have the selection, and the main stores didn't stay up to date with the trends. You can't survive with lotion, shoes, and bad books.

Those of you that think the area around Heritage is a "dump", you obviously haven't driven in the area and don't know what you're talking about. You can't be a dump if you have several new neighborhoods built 1/2 mile away. There's only 1 empty building anywhere near the mall (Pep Boys).

How does that qualify as a dump?

MonkeesFan
02-26-2010, 05:23 AM
Db411-You need a new digital camera! Thanks for the pictures, I was suppose to go but a major snowstorm prevented me from going to the mall one last time :( It is a shame it is gone, I had good memories of that mall! At least right now we still have Penn, Sooner, and Quail Springs that are doing good, I also was shocked when you said that it has mold growing and some water damage, it is sad, if they would repair it, maybe the mall would still be open :(