OGDEN CITY MALL: OGDEN, UT
Sam Graham's Commentary
Posted December 3, 2005 (user submitted October 24, 2005)
The Ogden City Mall opened in 1980 as a solution to a declining downtown with
anchors JCPenney, Nordstrom, Bon Marche and ZCMI. It was two-level mall that
was highly successful until the mid-1990's. The mall?s original owner, Ernie
Hahn, lost control of the site to CIGNA in the mid-1990s.
In 1981, Ogden got its second mall. The single-level and somewhat low-rent
looking Newgate Mall was opened with Sears and Mervyn's as anchors. The mall
opened less than 20-percent occupied and languished for the next decade while
Ogden City Mall thrived. Newgate got a major makeover in 1993, but it was two
other factors around 1995 that really saved the mall. Newgate successfully
attracted Dillard's, and Newgate's parent company was sold to General Growth
Properties. General Growth, with the strength of the addition of Dillard's,
attracted more national tenants including a 14-screen Cinemark theatre. The
tide turned strongly in Newgate's favor and their occupancy rate went from a
typical 50-percent of high-turnover local tenants to 90-percent occupancy and
above with major national players. Today, Newgate thrives with over 90 stores
The Ogden City Mall's decline basically paralleled Newgate's growth.
CIGNA sold the mall to Haywood and Angela Whichard of Raleigh, N.C in 1999.
Whichard announced grand intentions to revitalize the mall, but they became
"absentee landlords". The three remaining anchors closed under Whichard.
Nordstrom closed their dated store first. JCPenney followed suit after a brief
conversion of its space in an outlet format. Meier and Frank, a May division
which had purchased the ZCMI chain and converted all locations, were the last
to leave. Through the last two years of the mall's existence, many developers
were taken through the mall in hopes of saving it with the leading candidate
being the Boyer Co, who had just successfully opened the Gateway development in
Salt Lake City. Ultimately, the city purchased the mall and closed it Jan 1,
2002. The mall was then demolished.
(The link below opens the Ogden City Redevelopment update website, and
includes links to the mall's history and future vision.)
www.ogdencity.com/index.cfm/mall.main - Ogden City Redevelopment update website