New life for The Great Northern Mall; Where does it stand?
CLAY, NY —
Nearly eight months after a new real estate group bought the site, plans are being put into motion to bring new life to the Great Northern Mall in Clay.
This comes after dozens of stores inside Great Northern, and in other parts of the area like the Shoppingtown Mall in DeWitt, closed their doors. Paper covers doors to one of the entrances where stores like Macy's used to stand.
Raven Smith remembers coming to the mall all the time, now she said it's completely different.
"There were more stores definitely, especially the age I was, 21, and there were a bunch of stores," Raven Smith, of Syracuse, explained.
But there's still hope. Back in February, Mike Kohan, owner of Kohan Real Estate Investment Group based on Long Island, bought the mall.
"We've done painting, we've done the ceilings, tiles and the camera system," Kohan said. Kohan explained much work has gone into fixing the leaks coming from the roof. His company is dedicated to finding new retailers, a longer and more challenging process, but he knows it just takes time.
"They don't have a vision about what's going to happen to them," Kohan added. " We have to give them incentives and we have to assure them that their backs are not against the wall."
Kohan is looking into filling some of the vacant space with offices to help draw more of a crowd to the mall, which is what customers hope to see soon.
"I hope he has some good ideas because right now there are just tiny shops," Susan Darrohn of Clay said.