Remembering the Marketplace of the Midsouth

Linda Daichendt

Mall Marketing Director 1990-1991

MallofMemphis.org has been lucky enough to have several store employees from the Mall help with the building of this site. Linda is the first Mall employee (that we know of - many contributors choose not to identify themselves) to join us. She was employed as the Mall Marketing Director during 1990-1991 remodeling of the mall and is looking through her files now to see what she may be able to show us from the Mall management side.

Mall Offices

One area of mystery to most Mall shoppers and Mall store employees alike was the Mall Executive Offices. Linda offers some insight into that area:

"The Mall had a pretty large office suite which included a reception area, a secretary's area (for Management Secretary, Marketing Secretary, as well as offices for: Bookkeeper, Assistant Manager, Manager, Marketing Director, Assistant Marketing Director. As Marketing Director, my office was the largest (because Marketing always has the most "stuff") with a good-sized walk-in closet. The suite also included a conference room. Offices for the Security Director and Maintenance Director were located elsewhere in the Mall. The Mall Office suite was located off the Food Court on the second floor."

Renting Retail Space At The Mall

"I don't really recall rental information, however I can tell you that in-line stores paid by the square foot (probably somewhere around $40 per square foot) plus charges for CAM (common area maintenance) and Marketing (varied by tenant, was negotiated as part of their lease). Major department stores owned their spaces, but still paid some CAM and Marketing charges."

The New Skylights, Memphis Rain and Wet Sheetrock

"It happened in September, 1990 I believe (it's hard to remember, it was a long time ago). The construction company wouldn't listen when our staff told them that the Memphis rainy season would cause them problems if they didn't build a temporary roof over the areas where they were putting in skylights. Because they didn't listen (they covered the areas with plastic), when we got about 2 inches of rain in less than 2 hours, obviously the plastic didn't hold and water came into the holes. The water soaked the ceiling tiles and they started to break and fall. At the end, all the stores on the main concourse received some level of flooding, we closed the mall for several days, we hired 400 temporary workers to help clean it up, and I gave tours to the media (while they all wore hardhats for protection). We even had coverage on CNN! The construction company (or their insurance company) ended up have to pay millions to tenants for lost inventory, clean-up and repairs.


Grand Re Opening Flyer
 
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See Also Walgreens?

More To Come

This page is just getting started and Linda has offered to look through her files and contribute clippings, facts and information as appropriate.

Thanks Linda from MallofMemphis.org


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