Sunday, July 5, 2009
Welcome to West Oaks Mall
Okay so my updates have been as rare lately as a rainstorm this summer in Houston. I bought a house in early June and most of my time has been spent doing repairs to the house. I go to school and work also, so I am very limited with my time. I will try to get at least two self posts every month to keep the blog going, so be patient. As always feel free to submit your original articles to me. (See post below). Now onto the post of West Oaks Mall.
West Oaks Mall is located at the corner of Highway 6 and Westheimer Road in West Houston Texas. West Oaks Mall is the second of two malls in Houston that are not located next to a freeway (Pasadena Town Square is the other one). This mall opened two years after Foley's opened up in 1984 (Wikipedia, 2009). The mall had Foley's, Saks Fifth Avenue, Lord and Taylor, and Mervyn's as original anchors (Wikipedia, 2009). Dillard's was added later to the mall. The anchors now are Dillard's, Macy's and Sears, so the mall has changed anchors completely since opening. The best way to describe the state of the mall is to split it in half. The west side of the mall is emptying out as JCPenney and Steve and Barry's have closed. A restaurant opened up just after renovations to the mall and only lasted about six months, so the renovation in the mid 2000's did not help. The outside of the mall is very dated with the exception of the mall entrances pictured below. First Colony Mall in Sugarland opened in 1995 and Katy Mills really hurt this mall when it opened in 1999. Both malls are around ten miles away and closer to new home development. The East side of the mall is doing well with very little vacancies, but that may change as the economy slows down. Outside of the mall Toys R Us, Circuit City and several other big box stores have closed. Of particular interest is a retail power center across the street that lost Service Merchandise, Builders Square, and K-Mart to bankruptcies, but acquired new tenants to replace those losses. This mall is nothing special and may tred water for a few more years, but it will more than likely continue to empty out. Another item at this mall is the research office located near the Steve and Barry's shell. I have not seen these people in any other malls but this one because most malls will not tolerate harassment of their customers. Remember the people holding the clipboard that step out in front of you and try to get you to do a survey of a product? Yes they are still here and they will get you by the food court. I learned the hard way that these surveys are a waste of time that you will not get paid for your time. This is a mall that I will continue to update as it changes one way or the other, but the mall has been financially destroyed by the previous owner.
Here are a couple of entrances that demonstrate the interior design of the mall. Most of the signage of the mall was updated to the new look after the renovation and looks relatively new.
Alamo Drafthouse Cinema; this was brought in around the time of the remodel to help drive traffic to the mall.
Fine Interiors and Designs; obviously a former Linen's and Thing's. This location closed way before the company went into bankruptcy. The furniture store that is here now is very similar to the furniture store that took over a Circuit City shell at Deerbrook Mall.
Sears; this was a Saks Fifth Avenue anchor before it was Sears. What a downgrade of quality!
Macy's; this location is a converted Foley's from the acquisition.
This anchor was most recently a JCPenney, but they did not invest much money to change the building. The location was moved to a free standing building off of I-10 to the north near Katy. Lord and Taylor originally built and occupied this anchor.
Steve and Barry's closed in early 2009 with the bankruptcy. This anchor was formerly a Mervyn's
The interior was remodeled a few years ago to resemble an old western type of setting. The mall has wood accents and Texas designs all throughout.