The recent reopening of the mall revealed skeletal staffing and operations, a dearth of consumers and stores that have yet to reopen and other empty spaces where former tenant retailers have permanently closed. The financial distress is palpable, so it is clear that continued mall operations are at risk.
A permanent mall closure would become an unparalleled blight in our community, causing tremendous economic damage. The risk of running away viable developers is too high for our community. A new buyer may well decide to avoid neighborhood politics by pursuing a “by-right” development of thousands of market rate apartments.