Karen Ann Grienbrier's Commentary

Posted February 26, 2008 (user submitted)

Kyova Mall, formally known as Cedar Knoll Galleria, was built in late 1988 on the outskirts of Ashland, Kentucky. The mall opened in the fall of 1989 with a Sears, Stone & Thomas, Phar-Mor, and K-Mart. The mall's food court, at opening, held a White Mountain ice cream parlor, Luca's Pizza, Italian Oven and Pretzel's-Plus. Cedar Knoll Galleria was one of the largest in the tristate area and had many availability options for store shops and department store anchors. Sadly, it was doomed from the very start of it's arrival.

Kyova mall was built just 15 minutes away from the popular, more accesible mall, Ashland Town Center. Kyova Mall was also built in a dry county preventing from any restraunts with alcohol to be built in or surrounding the mall. This severly crushed the mall and was quickly labeled as a Dead Mall.

By the year 2003, Phar-Mor and K-Mart had closed their Cedar Knoll locations. Cedar Knoll's food court had since became devoid and empty.

In the summer of 2005, a Steve and Berry's opened in place of the K-Mart and proved itself quiet well for the area's consumers. A movie theatre, Pheonix Theatres, opened in early 2007, where the old Phar-More had once stood. By May of the same year, the mall board was given a letter of interest by a juniors department store. Shortly after, Boyd Country voters stepped down from being a dry country and enabled the sell of alcohol in businesses and restraunts. The county's voters hoped this would bring back business to the doomed mall.

As a longtime resident of the Southern Ohio, KY-OH-WV tristate, I can say that the Kyova mall has never been popular with the costumers of the area. The mall has never able to keep businesses nor was it able to keep the type of businesses to draw even a small amount of interest. If one needed a quick shopping trip, they could simply go Ashland Town Center, (which had a Walmart as an anchor till 2006!) and spend a whole day with shopping, movies and dinner at one of the nearby restraunts. If one wanted tons of options, they could easily spend a full day at the Huntington Mall which is located 45 minutes away in Huntington, West Virgina. Boyd County was also a dry county for many, many years which hurt the mall incredibly and stopped any chain restraunts from being built.

I remember going in the mall in the 90's and recalling how blank and dark it was. The Sears was small and the variety was even smaller. After a hour, I simply gave up and retreated back out into the main part of the mall. The mall was a single story, basic layout, popular in the area. It had many empty, dark stores (some had never, even been used!) There were few posters or signs along the walls. There were no stores of interest or even to shop at. I left and finished my day of shopping at the Ashland town center.

A few years later, I returned to see the new Steve and Berry's store. The mall was still dark, and scary almost. I walked through the mall and was suprised to be greated with a fantastic, huge clothing store. I bought a few things and retreated out of the mall since there was still no businesses of interest to shop at. Shortly after, word got out that the store was not being handled well and would soon pulled from the mall location.

Sadly, I don't think the mall will ever be anyting but a dead mall.

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