My daughter grew up going to the enclosed shopping center in Kensington, Md, where we lived for nearly a decade. There once was a kid’s play place on the third floor that was affordable and fun. Gone. We bought manga books, calendars, and tasty treats from the Borders. Gone. Molly trick-or-treated store to store on Halloween. No more, kiddies. My wife and I bought our wedding rings in a jewelry store that also is gone. The 850,000 square-foot upscale consumer cathedral closed earlier this year. Demolition is underway, and a court case brought by Lord & Taylor against the center’s management went before a jury earlier this week. Our memories, and those of others, are all that remain.
I chose self-titled “White Flint Mall”, which Mike Kalasnik shot on June 30, 2012, for its timeliness to current events. He used iPhone 4s, and for the first time in this series I slightly cropped a photo (to remove yellow road lines). Vitals: f/2.4, ISO 64, 1/2404 sec, 4.3mm. Mike, who joined Flickr in July 2007, runs the “Dead and Dying Retail” website, which offers startling look at urban decay.
Lord & Taylor alleges, and I believe, that White Flint could have been saved, but the owners made the decision to demolish long before major anchor stores vacated and pulled away smaller shops in the process. The future plan is to redevelop with a hotel, office buildings, and residences. With a Metro stop within walking distance, the location is ideal for Washington, D.C. commuters, should the redevelopment become a living and shopping oasis for young professionals.
However, today the jury ruled that the mall owners breached their contract with Lord & Taylor, ordering $31 million in damages. How ironic if demolishing the mall to redevelop will demolish the redevelopment plan because of the verdict.
I am not a big fan of drones, but couldn’t resist punctuating today’s selection with a video that explores the mall’s demolition from outside and within. If I close my eyes, while watching, what was is again for a few seconds, and then is gone. Forever but memories.
Photo Credit: Mike Kalasnik