Discover the Unique Features of Towson Town Center Mall, Towson, MD

The Birth and Evolution of Towson Town Center Mall

Towson Town Center Mall began its journey as Towson Plaza in 1952. Originally an open-air mall, it stood on land once owned by Goucher College.

This early version was a pioneering multi-level shopping center, a rarity at the time. Despite numerous transformations, the mall’s initial structure remains part of today’s complex, particularly its two lower levels.

1973 Towson Plaza transitioned into an enclosed space, adapting to the evolving retail landscape. This change marked the mall’s first major evolution, setting the stage for future renovations.

A significant overhaul came in 1982 with the introduction of Hecht’s department store, enhancing the mall’s retail offerings and appeal.

Developers Lawrence Rachuba and the DeChiaro group spearheaded this transformation, cementing the mall’s place in Towson’s commercial scene.

The 1990s brought another wave of change led by The Hahn Company. This period saw the mall enclosed and expanded, introducing new stores and attractions to draw more visitors.

Notable additions included Gadgets restaurant and arcade, a Warner Bros.-themed dining experience, although it was short-lived, closing in the early 1980s.

Despite the closure of some original stores like Hess Shoes and Friendly’s, the mall continued to grow. The introduction of the Arbor Terrace food court and new fountains in 1991, as part of the mall’s expansion, added to its allure.

By the late 2000s, Towson Town Center had established itself as a premier shopping destination in Maryland, a status it still holds today.

The mall’s ownership and management have also evolved. After being sold to The Rouse Company in the late 1990s, it eventually came under the stewardship of General Growth Properties.

2018, Brookfield Properties took over, bringing new ideas and management styles. Under their guidance, Towson Town Center continues to adapt and thrive, maintaining its relevance in an ever-changing retail environment.

Things to do north of Baltimore, MD, have always been influenced by the mall’s presence, making it a central hub for shopping and entertainment.

Architectural Highlights and Design

Towson Town Center stands out for its unique architectural design, tailored to its sloping geographical location.

The mall’s structure, integrating the original two levels with newer expansions, showcases a blend of historical and modern elements.

Incorporating natural light through skylights and an open central court enhances the shopping experience, making it more inviting.

Towson Town Center
Towsontowncenter, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

The 1991 renovation, led by The Hahn Company, introduced significant architectural features. The addition of the Arbor Terrace food court on Level 3 brought a new dimension to dining options within the mall.

This area, coupled with new fountains in the Nordstrom court, created a more upscale atmosphere. The installation of a glass elevator between the old escalators not only improved accessibility but also added a modern touch to the mall’s interior.

Parking solutions reflect the mall’s innovative design approach. With over 4,400 spaces, including four 7-story parking garages, Towson Town Center caters to many visitors.

The design ensures easy access to different mall levels, accommodating the site’s natural slope. This thoughtful layout minimizes congestion and enhances the overall customer experience.

Renovations and Technological Advances

In 2007, Towson Town Center embarked on a $76 million expansion and renovation project, marking its largest update since 1992. This project focused on modernizing the mall and enhancing the shopping experience.

Renovations included updates to the first and second floors, improvements to parking facilities, and new dining options. Introducing a “Main Street”-style facade and exterior shopping areas brought the mall a fresh look and feel.

The technological advancements in the parking system, initiated in 2016, set Towson Town Center apart. The million-dollar renovation of the four parking garages introduced the Park Assist system, which uses red and green lights to indicate available spaces.

This innovation, updated signage, and remodeled mall entrances have significantly improved the customer experience.

These renovations and technological upgrades reflect Towson Town Center’s commitment to staying current and competitive.

By continuously investing in the mall’s infrastructure and services, Brookfield Properties ensures that Towson Town Center remains a top destination for shoppers in Maryland.

Current Anchors of Towson Town Center: Nordstrom and Macy’s

Nordstrom’s Journey at Towson Town Center

Nordstrom, synonymous with quality and customer service, has been a cornerstone of Towson Town Center since its opening in 1991.

This marked a significant milestone for the mall, elevating its status and appeal with Nordstrom’s reputation for high-end fashion and exceptional service.

The store spans multiple levels, offering a wide range of products from luxury fashion brands to everyday items, catering to a diverse clientele.

Nordstrom’s presence in the mall underscores Towson Town Center’s commitment to providing premium shopping experiences.

Over the years, Nordstrom has adapted to changing consumer trends, incorporating new brands and services, including a Nordstrom Rack on the first floor, expanding the options for budget-conscious shoppers while maintaining quality.

Macy’s Role in the Evolution of Towson Town Center

Another anchor tenant, Macy’s, has a rich history within Towson Town Center, taking over the space from Hecht’s in 2006.

This transition marked a new era for the mall. Macy’s brought its affordable luxury brand and wide product assortment. The three-story department store connects to the mall’s top two floors, offering everything from fashion and home goods to cosmetics and accessories.

Macy’s has contributed significantly to the mall’s foot traffic and appeal, hosting annual events and sales that draw large crowds.

The store’s adaptation to the digital age, with online shopping and in-store pickup options, reflects the evolving retail landscape and Macy’s commitment to meeting customer needs in a changing market.

Together, Nordstrom and Macy’s serve as the pillars of Towson Town Center, each contributing to the mall’s identity as a premier shopping destination in Maryland.

Their continued evolution and adaptation to consumer demands and market trends are crucial to the mall’s success and appeal.

Towson Town Center
Towson Town Center” by dizrythmia is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

Famous Stores at Towson Town Center

Fashion and Apparel

Towson Town Center in Towson, MD, is a fashionista’s paradise, offering a range of stores catering to various styles and preferences. H&M and Forever 21 provide trendy and affordable clothing options for the younger crowd. 

Tory Burch and Lilly Pulitzer offer chic and sophisticated attire for those seeking more upscale fashion. Lululemon caters to the athleisure trend, providing high-quality workout and casual wear. 

Lucky Brand Jeans and Levi’s are go-to destinations for denim enthusiasts. At the same time, Zara offers European flair with its stylish and contemporary collections.

Jewelry and Accessories

The mall shines with stores like Pandora, known for its customizable charm bracelets, and Zales The Diamond Store, where shoppers can find exquisite diamond jewelry. 

Claire’s is perfect for trendy accessories and fun jewelry, catering especially to younger customers. 

Armani Jewelers provides a selection of luxury watches and fine jewelry, appealing to those with a taste for high-end accessories.

Beauty and Cosmetics

Beauty enthusiasts will find their haven at Towson Town Center, where stores like Sephora and M.A.C. offer a wide range of high-quality makeup and skincare products. 

Lush is known for its eco-friendly and handmade bath and body products. At the same time, Perfume Empire provides a vast selection of fragrances from various brands.


Shoe lovers have many options, with stores like Aldo and Steve Madden offering the latest footwear fashion. 

Vans cater to the casual and skateboarding crowd, while Johnston & Murphy provides classic and sophisticated options for men. Finish Line and Foot Locker are the go-to spots for the latest athletic and casual shoes.

Towson Town Center
Towson Town Center” by fauxto_digit is licensed under CC BY-ND 2.0

Specialty Stores

Build-A-Bear Workshop offers a fun and personalized toy experience for those looking for unique finds. Coach provides luxury handbags and accessories, while Typo features quirky stationery and home decor items. 

Lovisa and Francesca’s offer various trendy jewelry and accessories, perfect for adding a finishing touch to any outfit.

The mall has seen various tenants over the years, contributing to its diverse retail mix. The Rainforest Cafe opened in 1999 and closed in January 2009.

It was a notable attraction, offering an immersive dining experience. Although it no longer operates, its presence highlighted the mall’s commitment to providing unique experiences for shoppers.

Towson Town Center in Towson, MD, caters to various shopping needs and preferences, making it a premier destination for locals and visitors.

Whether updating your wardrobe, searching for the perfect gift, or treating yourself to some luxury items, this mall has something for everyone.

Security Challenges and Responses

Towson Town Center has faced its share of security challenges over the years. High-profile incidents have prompted the mall to enhance its security measures.

In 2005, the murder of a popular area high school teacher in one of the mall’s parking garages raised safety concerns.

Following the 2005 incident, the mall introduced several security upgrades. These included enhanced parking area lighting, increased mall surveillance cameras, and a stronger police presence.

The introduction of a curfew for minors in 2013, barring unaccompanied individuals under 17 from entering the mall after 5 pm on Fridays and Saturdays, aimed to reduce incidents involving youth.

Recent Events and Security Measures at Towson Town Center

In early 2023, Towson Town Center faced significant security challenges. On January 3, a large and unruly crowd of juveniles caused chaos in downtown Towson, particularly near the mall.

The incident, captured via the Citizen app, showed the extensive police response required to manage the situation. Police dispatch calls revealed officers observing three large groups converging towards Joppa Road, near the mall’s vicinity.

The Baltimore County Police Department had to close down parts of Joppa Road to manage the crowd effectively. The situation escalated to the point where anyone found trespassing was subject to arrest.

The police made eight arrests, with seven being juveniles. Despite numerous reports of weapons, none were found at the scene. Fortunately, there were no injuries, though some property damage occurred.

This event highlighted ongoing security concerns at Towson Town Center. The mall has a curfew policy, prohibiting unaccompanied minors on Friday and Saturday nights to prevent such disturbances.

Similar incidents in the past, including fights in the mall that led to arrests and property damage, have prompted discussions about safety and security measures.

In response to these challenges, Towson Town Center and local law enforcement have worked together to enhance security measures. The incident has led to reevaluating security protocols and community outreach efforts to prevent future disturbances.

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