The Sad History Of This Long Abandoned Suburban St. Louis Mall [Pictures]
WARNING: Under no circumstances should you enter this property. By doing so you risk bodily harm and/or prosecution for trespassing on private property.
It's incredible how some malls in the 2020s seem to be thriving, while others are left to whither with high vacancy rates and a future date with redevelopment or at least the wrecking ball. This is a look at one of the latter, the Jamestown Mall in suburban St. Louis, currently waiting for a date with a wrecking ball.
According to a story from Fox 2 Now in St. Louis, Jamestown Mall is set to be demolished later this month thanks to $12 million in Covid funds that are earmarked to fund the demolition.
It wasn't soon enough though to prevent a fire. A three-alarm fire in April left part of the abandoned mall in ruins and sent two firemen to the hospital. They were treated and released.
According to Wikipedia, Jamestown Mall opened in 1973 and underwent expansion in the 1990s. Mall anchors over the years included Sears, Dillards, Macy's, JC Penny, and a movie theater. The mall's trouble began in the early 2000s, in 2003 the mall was 30 percent empty. Then in 2006, Dillards closed.
There was talk of redevelopment in 2008 with the Dillards becoming offices and that wing of the mall being closed. In 2009 Sears closed, and St. Louis County hired the Urban Land Institute to determine the mall's viability as a retail center.
The study found the mall no longer viable because it overlapped with other retailers in the area. After an attempt to auction the former Dillards store, the County pulled their financial support for the mall's redevelopment which caused the mall's owners to scuttle their redevelopment plan.
In 2010 there were plans to demolish everything except the JC Penny and the Macy's stores and develop it as a mixed-use site, however, that never happened.
In late 2012 the mall's gas service was shut off, then turned on again. Followed in 2013 by the mall's heat being shut off in November. Macy's would be the last anchor to leave the mall after they announced they were leaving in January of 2014. On July 1, 2014, the mall closed for good.
According to STL Partnership, In March of this year, the St. Louis County Port Authority released its market analysis and feasibility study for property. The study was done to evaluate redevelopment opportunities that are aligned with the needs and desires of the community.
"The report recommends Ag-Food Technology Campus as the preferred land use for the Jamestown Mall site. The report also outlined an alternative land use of senior (55+) residential with agri-living."
Keep scrolling to see pictures of the long-abandoned Jamestown Mall in suburban St. Louis.