Sears Demolition Continues Through October

BOARDMAN, Ohio — An update from the owner of the Southern Park Mall reports demolition of the former Sears department store will begin in late October.

Washington Prime Group, Columbus, stated Wednesday that demolition of the department store will take about four to six weeks to complete. Demolition of the former Sears Auto Center is expected to be complete by early October. The Southern Park Mall celebrates its 50th anniversary next year.

Demolition of the department store began Sept. 7 during Community Day at the mall. Selective demolition has begun on the interior of the space that connects the former Sears building to the mall, and that area has been barricaded. The interior demolition isn’t expected to impact guests, the company said in a statement.

By next fall, the former Sears space and the outparcel that includes the Sears Auto Center will be replaced by DeBartolo Commons, a greenspace featuring a bandstand, athletic field and retail spaces along the mall’s exterior wall.

The total cost of the project has not been announced. However, during the Community Day event, Matt Jurkowitz, Washington Prime vice president of development, said $30 million “is not outside the realm of what we’re willing to do. Some of our plans will evolve over time, but it’s certainly in that realm.”

Among the tenants will be a 37,000-square-foot indoor golf center with an accompanying restaurant. Washington Prime Group is in talks with a fitness company to open a space in DeBartolo Commons, although a letter of intent hasn’t been signed.

In April 2018, Sears Holdings announced it would close the Boardman location by mid-July of that year.

Pictured: Demolition began Sept. 7 on the former Sears space at Southern Park Mall.

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