The search "blight" yielded
69 articles

Station Plaza: a strip mall of churches is hardly a shopper’s heaven.

I’ve spotted the storefront church numerous times in the past, both in strip malls and in conventional main streets. Rarely (if ever) have I described it with flattering words. It’s not that I harbor any hostility to the exercise of religion, nor do I feel that church plantings need to take place in conventional ecclesiastical

Old Town Mall MONTAGE: life after people, a mile from Baltimore’s downtown.

Just a few weeks after a moribund mall montage, I’m back, despite the fact that these photo-heavy articles take forever and a day to create. But I can’t resist: like the Midtown Mall in Worcester, this retrograde retail ruin gets little coverage. It’s not a conventional suburban mall—it’s an urban setting, and, also like Midtown,

Sears at Landmark Mall: all dressed up and nowhere to go.

We’re all aware of the abysmal condition of the national corporation Sears Holdings Company and its two flagship department stores, Sears and Kmart. I’ve covered both numerous times. For the last decade, the parent company, in a desperate attempt to induce profitability, has shed its lowest performing locations, one after another. But none are well-performing,

NJ Chasing News: lurking amidst the zombie malls.

If you live in the NYC media market, I made the local news a few days ago.  The clip is now available on YouTube. NJ Chasing News interviewed me last week, in the wake of the escalating vacancy in malls, both in North Jersey and across the country. I only physically appear briefly (it was a

A power center turns over a new leaf, only to find more grubs.

About a year ago I explored one of the few retail typologies that seems to be growing in prevalence during this turbulent era: the power center. It’s essentially the only physical construction that suburban retail developers are building these days. And they usually look like little more than a strip mall on steroids—which, apparently, is

Mall department stores: will the last one please turn the lights out?

We’ve been hearing and witnessing for years the turbulent state of American retail. Conventional sellers of durable goods—of housewares, sporting goods, electronics, and clothes—have suffered in general, and malls have suffered in particular. But even more salient have been the struggles of the historic department stores to our malls. Scarcely a week goes by when

“Dirt” photos make Cleveland news: WKYC covers the closed Concourse D.

I don’t always single out those times when American Dirt gets outside media coverage, but this one was germane enough that I figured it was worth it. Cleveland-area news and NBC affiliate WKYC contacted me a few weeks ago about an article I wrote back in early 2013, featuring the quiet halls of Concourse D