The History and Development of Huntington Mall
The Huntington Mall, nestled in Barboursville, West Virginia, marks a significant milestone in the state’s retail landscape. Since its grand opening on February 3, 1981, the mall has evolved from a regional shopping center to the largest mall in West Virginia, a testament to its enduring appeal and adaptability.
Developed by the Cafaro Company, a notable name in the real estate industry, the mall was envisioned as a comprehensive shopping destination catering to various consumer needs and preferences.
At its inception, Huntington Mall was home to four major anchor stores: JCPenney, Sears, Stone & Thomas, and Lazarus. These anchors were pivotal in establishing the mall’s reputation as a go-to shopping location, drawing customers across the region.
The mall’s strategic location, about 12 miles east of downtown Huntington near exit 20 of Interstate 64, further contributed to its accessibility and popularity.
The Foot Locker store’s opening excited the mall’s early days. Tennis player Bobby Riggs appeared and challenged mall employees to a game of tennis, adding to the mall’s community engagement.
The 1990s saw significant expansions and changes within the mall. In 1990, Phar-Mor, a discount pharmacy chain, was introduced as the fifth anchor, diversifying the mall’s retail offerings.
The acquisition of Stone & Thomas by Elder-Beerman in 1998 marked another shift in the mall’s retail landscape, followed by the opening of Borders Books & Music in 1999, its first store in West Virginia. These additions reflected the mall’s ongoing efforts to adapt to consumer trends and preferences.
The turn of the millennium brought further developments, with the second Dick’s Sporting Goods in the state opening in 2002 after Phar-Mor’s closure.
The mid-2000s saw the announcement and opening of a new Cinemark movie theater in 2009, replacing a previously closed six-screen complex and enhancing the mall’s entertainment options.
The closure of Borders in 2011 due to the company’s bankruptcy led to Books-A-Million taking its place, ensuring that the mall continued to serve as a cultural and entertainment hub.
Throughout its history, Huntington Mall has adapted to the changing retail environment and significantly impacted the local economy and community.
The mall’s presence has attracted a variety of businesses to the surrounding area, including motels, restaurants, and major retailers like Walmart and Best Buy, contributing to the economic growth of Barboursville.
With an average of $375 million in retail trade, the mall has played a crucial role in increasing tax revenue for local budgets.
As we explore things to do near Huntington, West Virginia, the Huntington Mall stands out as a central figure in the community’s social and economic fabric. Its history reflects growth, adaptation, and enduring significance, making it a pivotal landmark in the state’s retail industry.
Current Anchors and Their Stories at Huntington Mall
JCPenney has been a cornerstone of Huntington Mall since its opening, serving as one of the original anchors that drew crowds for its wide selection of clothing, home goods, and appliances.
Over the years, JCPenney has adapted to changing consumer trends, offering affordable fashion and a personalized shopping experience. Its enduring presence reflects its ability to evolve and maintain relevance in the competitive retail landscape of Barboursville, WV.
Macy’s at Huntington Mall brings a blend of upscale and accessible fashion to shoppers in Barboursville, WV. Known for its fashion-forward clothing, cosmetics, and home decor, Macy’s has become a destination for those seeking quality and style.
With regular sales and events, Macy’s continues to attract a diverse clientele, cementing its status as a premier shopping destination within the mall.
At competitive prices, Kohl’s offers Huntington Mall visitors a unique mix of clothing, shoes, and home goods. Its commitment to convenience, value, and variety has made it a favorite among families and budget-conscious shoppers.
Kohl’s also participates in community-oriented programs, further establishing its role as a community-minded anchor within the mall.
Dick’s Sporting Goods
As the go-to destination for sports enthusiasts and outdoor adventurers, Dick’s Sporting Goods provides a comprehensive selection of equipment, apparel, and footwear.
Since its opening, it has catered to the active lifestyle of Barboursville residents, offering everything from camping gear to team sports equipment, making it an essential stop for fitness and outdoor activities.
TJ Maxx/HomeGoods is a dual-format store that brings together the thrill of the hunt for designer brands at TJ Maxx with the treasure trove of home decor at HomeGoods.
This combination offers shoppers in Barboursville, WV, the opportunity to find high-quality, on-trend items at significant discounts, making it a popular destination for fashionistas and home decorators.
The Cinemark Theater adds an entertainment dimension to Huntington Mall, providing moviegoers with a state-of-the-art cinematic experience.
The latest blockbusters and comfortable seating make it a perfect escape for families and film buffs. The theater’s presence enhances the mall’s appeal as a comprehensive shopping, dining, and entertainment destination.
Woody Williams Center for Learning and Careers (Coming Soon)
The Woody Williams Center for Advanced Learning and Careers, set to be located at the Huntington Mall in the former Sears building, represents a significant step forward in educational and career development in Barboursville, WV.
This new facility, named in honor of the renowned West Virginia hero Woody Williams, aims to expand the programming and capacity of the Cabell County Career and Technical Center.
With more than double the square footage of the current facility, it promises to alleviate waiting lists for popular programs by accommodating more students and introducing additional courses.
This expansion is good news for students and is expected to serve as an economic driver, attracting businesses to the area and bolstering the local job market. Construction of the center is anticipated to take two years until the 2024-25 school year.
Each anchor store and facility at Huntington Mall brings its unique flavor and service to the shopping experience, contributing to the mall’s status as a central hub for the people of Barboursville, WV.
Huntington Mall‘s retail lineup is a vibrant mix of national chains and unique local shops, offering something for everyone across various categories.
In fashion, shoppers can find the latest trends at American Eagle Outfitters, Aeropostale, and Hollister Co., which cater to a younger demographic with casual and trendy offerings.
For those interested in beauty and wellness, Bath & Body Works and ULTA Beauty provide a wide range of skincare, makeup, and fragrances.
Tech enthusiasts have Best Buy for the latest electronics and gadgets, while book lovers can explore BAM! (Books-A-Million) for a vast selection of books, magazines, and collectibles.
The mall also features specialty stores like Spencer’s and Hot Topic, known for their unique gifts and pop culture merchandise. For those looking to enhance their home, stores like HomeGoods offer high-quality home decor items at affordable prices.
This diverse retail mix caters to a wide range of shopping preferences and ensures that visitors to Huntington Mall have a comprehensive and enjoyable shopping experience.
Whether looking for the latest fashion trends, tech gadgets, or home decor, the mall’s famous stores by type provide a one-stop shop for all needs.
Dining Options Galore
Huntington Mall offers various dining options that cater to every taste and preference, making it a popular destination for shoppers and food enthusiasts.
The Big Loafer stands out for its unique sandwiches and casual dining atmosphere, perfect for a quick lunch break. Hibachi Master offers a taste of Japanese cuisine with its teppanyaki-style cooking and sushi, providing a delightful dining experience.
Bob Evans and Buffalo Wild Wings are go-to spots for traditional American fare, offering hearty meals and a wide selection of wings and sauces. Fast-food options are plentiful, with Burger King, Chick-fil-A, and McDonald’s providing quick and familiar meals for shoppers on the go.
Charleys Philly Steaks brings the taste of Philadelphia with its signature cheesesteaks. Chili’s Grill & Bar and Logan’s Roadhouse offer sit-down dining options with a diverse menu ranging from burgers to steaks.
International flavors are also represented, with China Max serving up Chinese favorites and Olive Garden Restaurant offering Italian dishes in a family-friendly environment.
For those looking for lighter options, Panera Bread offers a variety of soups, salads, and sandwiches. Ruby Tuesday Restaurant, known for its salad bar and casual American cuisine, is another sit-down dining option.
Sbarro offers quick Italian meals, perfect for a fast and satisfying pizza slice. Lastly, Wendy’s rounds out the fast-food offerings with its burgers and frosty, ensuring that there’s something for everyone at Huntington Mall.
The Mall’s Economic and Social Impact
Since its opening in 1981, Huntington Mall has played a significant role in Huntington’s economic and social landscape and the surrounding region.
As the largest mall in West Virginia, it has become a major shopping destination and a catalyst for economic development. The mall’s presence has attracted businesses, including motels, restaurants, and major retailers like Walmart and Best Buy, to shop nearby.
This influx of companies has contributed to Barboursville’s economic vitality, creating jobs and increasing tax revenues that support local services and infrastructure.
The mall’s impact extends beyond economics to social contributions, serving as a community hub where people gather for shopping, entertainment, and dining.
It has hosted numerous events and programs that foster community engagement, from holiday celebrations to charity fundraisers, enhancing the quality of life for residents.
The introduction of the Cinemark theater and the upcoming Woody Williams Center for Learning and Careers further underscore the mall’s role in providing cultural and educational opportunities to the community.
Moreover, Huntington Mall‘s success has shown the potential for retail to drive regional development, demonstrating how a shopping center can be more than just a place to shop but a cornerstone of community life and economic growth.
Its continued evolution and adaptation to the changing retail landscape will likely ensure its place as a key player in the economic and social fabric of West Virginia for years to come.
Future Developments and Innovations
A major highlight in 2023 was the announcement of Dave & Buster’s opening at the mall, a significant development that promises to bring additional entertainment options to the area.
Known for its arcade games, sports bar, and restaurant, Dave & Buster’s is expected to attract locals and visitors and add a new dimension to the mall’s entertainment offerings.
Huntington Mall is poised for continued growth and innovation, with plans to enhance all visitors’ shopping and entertainment experience.
The mall management constantly explores new ways to adapt to the evolving retail landscape, ensuring it remains a competitive and appealing destination for shoppers and retailers.
The introduction of new stores and dining options is also on the horizon, with an emphasis on diversifying the mall’s retail mix to include more local and artisanal brands.
This strategy aims to cater to the growing demand for unique and locally sourced products, providing shoppers with a wider range of shopping options.