Monday, June 27, 2011

Solano Mall Gets Sassier Before It's Sold

Westfield Solano Mall recently celebrated the grand opening of a food court near JC Penney on the upper level. Westfield has been gradually renovating the 30-year old shopping center. Over the past few years, new flooring has been installed, railings were replaced, and new sky bridges were added. Finally, the mall seems comparable to other Westfield malls in the region.

Boasting 169 retailers, Solano Mall opened in 1981. The mall was attached to an existing JC Penney that opened 9 years earlier. Emporium-Capwell joined the mall in 1983 and Macy's in 1985. When Emporium-Capwell closed in 1996, Sears moved from its original location to the old Emporium-Capwell building. The old Sears building was renovated into Edwards Cinema and Best Buy.

An interesting feature in Solano Mall is the skylights. Similar to Taubman malls, artificial lighting in Solano Mall emanates from lighting groups set in skylights. Shoppers are given the impression that it's daylight outside, even though the sun has long gone. Originally, these triangular lighting groups had colored panels in them.

Although Westfield has been upgrading the mall for years, it recently decided to put Solano Mall, as well as Sacramento's Downtown Plaza, on the market.

Read my review of Westfield Solano Mall.


Randy said...

What year did JCPenney originally open? Were there any smaller shops around before Solano Mall was built? Also, you forgot to mention Mervyn's opening in 1982.

BIGMallrat said...

JC Penney opened in 1972. It was just them and their auto center. The land had already been purchased for the mall and the developers were waiting for the supporting population base to form and firm commitments from 2 other department stores. I know Liberty House had an early interest.
Thanks for the Mervyn's opening date! I haven't been able to verify Sears' opening, either.

Randy said...

I would imagine Sears most likely opened the same year as Macy's, 1985.

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