Metcalf South mall closes its doors for good on Friday - KCTV5

Metcalf South mall closes its doors for good on Friday

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Inside, Metcalf South sat empty on its last day. Inside, Metcalf South sat empty on its last day.
OVERLAND PARK, KS (KCTV) -

It's the end of a shopping era in Johnson County. When 4 p.m. struck Friday, Metcalf South shut its doors for good.

To find out about it's past, all one has to do is walk its floors.

"It's like a place frozen in time," said John Burr of Overland Park.

Burr said this while on his daily walk past what used to be storefront after storefront. Those stores now sit vacant.

Metcalf South's closure at 4 p.m. is the end of a nearly 50-year run as it succumbed to a change in times and shoppers' tastes.

"There certainly doesn't seem to be as much demand for malls. Oak Park seems to fill a need in this area for it. I've enjoyed being here, though," Burr said.

"It's awful. You know, it's a good building and it's kind of a waste," said Jackie Brooks of Gardner, KS.

Brooks said the closing is more personal for her. She came in Friday one last time to look at the place she remembers frequenting since second grade and working in on three occasions, as a teen and young adult.

"I mean, it got sad over the years as stores started moving out, you know. Even when I was a senior in high school and everything, it was a lot of people. It was really busy, but now it's nothing," Brooks said.

An employee and owner at one of the remaining businesses at Metcalf South said Friday was bittersweet.

"It's the only thing I know right now. I have to trust in God and just hope I find something," said employee Adam Palomeque.

For shoppers, the closing just means finding another place to shop, but for Palomeque it means finding another job.

"You have to be in your own shoes because it's hard. And, you know, it's a lot of competition outside and you won't have a job. You have family. It's hard," he said.

At the Glenwood Arts Theater, the only survivor of the closure besides Sears, they're not just surviving, but thriving. With the independent films they show, they were never really dependent on mall shoppers.

"I feel like the last comic standing. We're the last theater standing," said Owner Brian Mossman.

The theater is actually gearing up for a seven-day film festival that will have 55 films and 20 directors coming in.

"Unless we're notified one way or the other, we're just going business as usual. So we're programming our movies as normal, like the film festival in October and, until we're notified, we can't make any changes and we hope to be here for a little while, but how knows," Mossman said.

The property owners are tight-lipped about the building, located at West 95th Street and Metcalf Avenue. Local property group called Lane4 said Metcalf South had become a money drain and it was more expensive to keep open.

Lane4 said there are a lot of different options on the table for the 62-acre property and many prospective buyers, but they aren't' going to rush anything.

Copyright 2014 KCTV (Meredith Corp.) All rights reserved.

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