Looking for an air-conditioned place to take a brisk walk, or deep discounts on home furnishings and apparel?
The Esplanade Mall may be the answer.
An effort is underway to generate new interest in the mall, that has struggled over the years to maintain tenants.
Both managers and shoppers shared their thoughts with WGNO News Reporter Darian Trotter.
Efforts are underway to generate new interest and support for The Esplanade.
The Kenner shopping mall has struggled to step up foot traffic and retain retailers.
Shopper Louis Jessup said, “I’m surprised it’s still open.” Trotter asked, “Why? We never see much traffic,” Jessup replied.
Elizabeth Vaughn admits she hadn’t shopped here in more than a year.
“It was okay, it really wasn’t that busy. “Kind of felt strange because usually malls are a little more packed,” Vaughn said.
Research shows Kenner residents routinely overlook The Esplanade for Lakeside Shopping
Center in Metairie.
“Pac Sun was taken out of here,” shopper Dillyn Benton said. “I use to get a lot of my clothes at Pac Sun. “They got a Pac Sun over there. “I’m going to go over there.”
The December opening of The Grand Theater, and the fairly new Target department store has helped bring new energy to the mail.
Mall owners are doing everything they can. Most recently, they announced plans to relocate merchants from the second floor to the first floor in hopes of attracting more foot traffic.
A spokeswoman for Simon Property Group says, “We strive to provide the best possible shopping experience, and continue to work to attract new retailers,” — Beth George.
Louis Jessup has seen several come and go.
“I mean we’ve seen a few that have shut down since the last time we’ve been here, but we’ve also seen a few that have actually started up,” Jessup said.
“They got to do things often people don’t have,” Benton added.
Dillyn Benton and his friends would like to see a store that caters to skate enthusiasts.
“I just feel like they need to think about what stores they have,” Benton said. “The ones that aren’t capitalizing, like the ones that don’t make money they need to take out and put something back.”
Mall management and Kenner City Leaders are asking residents to do their part, by supporting The Esplanade Mall, and help keep it open.