Sunday, October 22, 2006

80's Gems (literally), Murder! and Current Press

First, I want to post these photos from the early-80s of two of the mall's jewelry stores, Barclay's and Castelberg's. I was kindly given these by a very helpful lady at the NABB Center at SU, so a huge thank you to her.

*NOTE* If the photos don't initially load, refresh your browser. Most of my photos are idiotically huge.

A while back, I was informed by someone who by now I consider a very solid source that there was a murder in the mall in the early to mid-70s. I couldn't, however, find any trace of this — until this evening.

Apparently, in 1972, a 17 year-old (?) was murdered by her husband (??) after he had shot her parents in their Fruitland home. She was shot while behind the counter of the bookstore where she worked which was in the West Mall.

This of course echoes the 1991 murder in the women's bathroom when a 17 year-old SU student from Pittsburgh was stabbed.

I intend on posting all of the articles, by the way. I just need to hijack someone's Lexus Nexus account first.

In the meantime, here are a few articles from the last few months:

Mall site could grow in size
By Laren Hughes Hall
Staff Writer

SALISBURY -- More commercial space within the old Salisbury Mall redevelopment project was approved Thursday.

The Salisbury Planning and Zoning Commission will forward its favorable recommendation to the City Council. Thursday's approval was only for the inclusion of three commercial parcels and has no bearing on any other aspects of the project on the 80-acre site.

Salisbury Mall Associates on Thursday requested the inclusion of the existing Eckerd's, Hebron Savings Bank and an undeveloped parcel -- totaling 35,000 square feet of retail space -- into its proposed Planned Residential District.

Developers initially requested a Planned Development District, which is more dense than the PRD. The tentative approval of the PDD by city officials was the subject of a lawsuit filed by four local residents who felt the more dense PDD classification would stress city infrastructure.

"This is a very dangerous precedent," said Salisbury resident Dot Truitt, one of many residents in opposition to the inclusion of the three commercial parcels Thursday. "My concern is that this (development) could grow even larger. This is how you lose control."

The three parcels are part of the former PRD and do not meet the minimum size of 5 acres to retain that classification.

While some residents were concerned developers were seeking the parcels for their own benefit, Salisbury Mall Associates representative Michael Dzaman explained that wasn't the case.

"This is not intended to have a material impact on the development," Dzaman said. "We wanted to proceed with doing this step so we could create a new zone that would not be illegal for someone else."

Developers also requested that a 5-acre parking lot used by the Wicomico County Youth & Civic Center be excluded from the PRD. Although it will no longer be included in the project, Dzaman said the acreage will still be provided to them.

The developers have scheduled a public meeting for Oct. 26 to discuss their proposed plans prior to their next meeting with the City Council. Although demolition of the vacant mall was scheduled for January, Dzaman said that will likely be delayed until final approval is granted by the City Council. Measures will be taken, however, to ensure the property is safe, he said.

Last week, several Salisbury agencies reported to the vacant mall where they conducted a safety inspection and, aside from ordering the building secure from intruders, a report is expected to be given to developers early next week with a laundry list of needs to be addressed.

As density has been a concern for many residents, Dzaman said his associates are working to reduce the number of units from 811 to 700, per a request by the City Council.

"We favor the plan," said Michael Pretl, Salisbury resident and president of the Wicomico Environmental Trust. "It looks like the density is moving in the direction we want it to and we look forward to the next meeting."

Reported by Elizabeth Harrington
Concerns Raised About Old Salisbury Mall Property


SALISBURY- People who live near the old Salisbury Mall are taking concerns about the vacant building to city officials.

The residents say vandalism, trespassing and the building's structural safety are all big problems there.

On Thursday, city officials, along with police and fire personnel will inspect the mall and then the city will come up with a plan to keep this area secure. They say it is up to the owners of the mall property to enforce a plan that includes fences, barricades and boarding up doors.

The fire department has told the city that the building is not safe for firefighters. A group of concerned citizens are also worried about the graffiti and crime at the condemned building. People like Linda Kent say police have had to respond numerous times to the mall property in the past several years for reports of vandalism and other nuisance violations.

Salisbury Mayor Barrie Tilghman said the city is taking these concerns seriously. She said her office has been in talks with the developers to come up with a new plan to redevelop the site before the end of the year. She said those plans will not be as large as originally planned

"[They will have to] lower the density to between six and 700 units," she said. She also noted that the property will have to be a true mix of residential and retail.

The developers will present their plans for this property at next Thursday's Salisbury-Wicomico County Planning and Zoning Commission meeting.

Old mall site to be secured
By Joseph Gidjunis
Staff Writer

SALISBURY -- The old Salisbury Mall site could start mimicking the latest military installation in order to properly secure the site from children, the homeless and criminals.

A complete list of recommendations is expected to be discussed with city officials Tuesday that include installing thick plywood over doors and windows; painting over windows, erecting a chain-link fence, possibly with razor wire, cleaning up shrubs and trash and installing concrete barriers in front of parking lot entrances.

City fire and planning officials compiled lists as they walked past the no trespassing signs, condemnation certificate and broken glass at the old Salisbury Mall for the first time in more than two years Thursday to conduct the first inspection of the site since the last tenant left in 2004.

To complete the 40-minute walk-through of the facility, property owners and emergency personnel had to wear protective dust masks to keep out dust, mold and perhaps asbestos. Firefighters said they could smell the musty, rotten odor as soon as the front doors were opened. The public was forbidden from the inspection.

"I think everyone that came here saw what they expected ... There is nothing in the building to save," said Jonathan Natelson, managing member of Chesapeake Realty Ventures LLC, which owns the property. "We're trying to keep it as secure as possible, and we'll step up our efforts."

Some of the problems that concern officials are the fire hazards, sections of roof that could cave in and broken glass and debris.

Salisbury Fire Chief David See and Salisbury Neighborhood Services & Code Compliance Director Tom Stevenson said the recommendations will be finalized by the city and given to the property owner. A final plan of action by the owner is expected, along with a timeline for completion.


Blogger dataice said...

Wow, those pics of Barcaly's and Castleberg's from the early 80's really brings back alot of good memories of what the mall looked like in its hey day. Thanks for posting those. And congrats on a fab site. In a few months when the demolition starts she will only be a memory and possibly a discussion at Sunday dinners.

4:37 PM  
Blogger DAD said...


5:05 PM  
Blogger SilenceoftheHills said...

I remember the old Salisbury mall. When I was a kid, I remember it getting slowly phased out. I was born in 87, and not too soon, it was almost just the IGA food store, some shops we'd get old NES games from. I remember the old dinosaur discovery thing, where they had robots and pretend digging. I think it had a theatre, and I think that's where by brother saw Mortal Kombat in 95.

8:36 PM  

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