Northland Shopping Center, Several Years Since Its Demolition

Update: The Target closed on August 20, 2016; there is a high vacancy in the rest of the shopping center.

It’s hard to believe that this generic strip mall stands on the grounds of what was once an architecturally fascinating example of 1950’s commercialism. I had never heard of Northland Shopping Center when I was growing up in St. Louis, but I learned of the mall from Dead Malls several years ago. There is much documentation of what was once on the site at Built St. Louis and B.E.L.T.

I wish I could have seen this center before it was torn down, but I was living out of town at the time of its destruction. In fairness, the occupancy rate of the new shopping center seems close to 100%, which honestly was more than could be said about the old center. Would a new re-branding and renovation of the old center have encouraged new tenants? We will never know.

6 Comments Add yours

  1. A Brazilian professor is completing a book on dying retail, and wants to use one of my Northland photos. And I'm telling you what I told him:Northland was never a mall. It was the mall concept that killed Northland Shopping Center and the other open-air plazas like it. So calling Northland a mall is a bit like spitting on its grave.(Oh, the drama!)

  2. Right on. Northland was a shopping center – open air. Another example, on a smaller scale of course, is the Normandy Shopping Center, which housed Britts Department Store, a Walgreens (complete with a small lunch room), a Ben Franklin Variety Store, Normandy Bank (I still have my last bank book), Favazza Florist, a bowling alley, and —–Jewelry store (Name escapes me), among other shops. Last time I was in St. Louis, a few years back, the center was still intact.

  3. Sheilaostl says:

    I believe the jewelry store in Normandy Shopping Center was Hubbell’s. There was also Flannigan’s Paint Store that offered art lessons on Saturdays. I was just reminiscing about the lunch counter at Walgreens. I grew up in Pasadena Hills and we walked to this shopping center all the time. I bought my first record album at Britt’s – Carol King’s Tapestry. 🙂

    1. John says:

      We went to Normandy Shopping Center to eat at Holland House which may have been owned by Britts, but Im not sure. It was adjacent to it and had wrought iron gates to close Britts off on Sundays so that Holland House could be open while Britts was closed.

  4. Mary K. says:

    Normandy Shopping Center was also home to Tom’s Trains, a hobby store specializing in model trains (and also sold model kits for cars, airplanes, etc.). I believe the owner was Tom Blong. In my youth, I spent a fortune there, $0.50 to $0.75 at a time. The rest of my wealth was squandered at the bowling alley.

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