HIGH POINT, N.C. – Next week, Oak Hollow Mall will officially close its doors to the public.
Customers aren’t the only ones who will miss the shopping center. Those who use the indoor location as an exercise space are among those disappointed.
Ed Thompson travels from Jamestown regularly to walk around the mall.
“I am in grief, I really am,” Thompson said. “Weather, hills—those two things probably drove me indoors, where I have all climate control and I just don’t like those hills as much anymore,” Thompson said.
Thompson says mall walking is weatherproof, safe and allows for people to socialize. Oak Hollow Mall is a convenient location for him. Now he’s searching for alternative indoor sites.
The number of stores occupying the mall has decreased significantly since the shopping center opened in 1995.
High Point University bought the property in 2011 and officials said they tried to keep the doors open through reasonable rent for tenants and using the site as a shuttle location for university events to attract crowds to the mall.
Sue Foust, a mall walker, has observed the decline in business at the shopping center.
“It just has gradually dwindled down until there was nothing. And I remember when it opened in 1995—I was here. We just thought we had a grand thing and it’s sad. And I’m afraid High Point won’t ever have another mall.”
High Point University officials say, at this time, they haven’t decided what they’ll use the property for. The HPU Community Center is already housed in the old JCPenney, and used to offer organizations a complimentary space for events. The university will continue to operate that center on the property.
After March 10th, the mall will officially close.