Here are 5 potential turnaround strategies for Westdale Mall.
Feel free to send me your own plans. You’ll get full credit, of course
1. The Ronald Wilson Reagan Museum of 1980s Culture — Dedicate at least part of the mall to a museum and research institute celebrating the decade that embraced indoor shopping. Open up a Chess King or a Hal’s to sell acid-washed jeans. Fire up a St. Elmo’s Fire movie theater to show the classics. Invite washed-up hair bands for nostalgia concerts. Hold a symposium on the rise and fall of mall bangs and mullets. The possibilities are endless. Heck, just naming it after Ronald Reagan will prompt thousands of conservatives to send in donations by the truckload.
2. Ethamall — Transform Westdale into the first American shopping center run entirely on corn-based ethanol — processed on site. Dig up part of that big parking lot and plant a proud stand of tall Iowa corn. Rent out ethanol-powered shopping scooters. Open a high-end martini bar that serves corn vodka. Get your kids’ picture taken with Corny McFuel, the Westdale mascot. Take a ride on the corn syrup flume. Fun for the whole family.
3. Adventure Mall –Adventure vacations are becoming increasingly popular, and I think adventure shopping is next. In the redesigned Westdale, shoppers would have to climb rock walls, cross rocky gorges, kayak down a rushing stream and rappel down sheer rock faces to get into stores, restaurants and other businesses. Makes that ice rink and carousel at Coral Ridge look pretty tame, huh?
4. Westdale – Now China-free — With millions of the nation’s consumers freaked-out over recalls of toys and other lead-glazed China-made products, Westdale could capitalize by selling only products made in the good old U.S. of A. OK, so the mall would still be more than half empty, and selection would be limited, but combining safety and patriotism could be a gold mine.
5. Westdale Private Shopping Club — The minute you start charging a membership fee, people will flock to Westdale. Just sell 30-pound bags of pizza rolls, crates of toilet paper and 20-gallon jars of mayonnaise and Westdale’s next stop is comeback city.