Thursday, October 25, 2007


So apparently there was an armed robbery yesterday in the Midtown Mall. I had just eaten breakfast about 6 hours prior to the robbery in the Midtown Diner.

The Midtown Mall has always been one of the saddest things to me about downtown Worcester. As in many things in Worcester the short sightedness of whomever the management company is who handles this place blows my mind. The Midtown Mall is so cool. The layout of the place. The narrowness of it. The atmosphere in there could be incredible. Instead we have what we have in there which is some pretty sketchy stores and a half decent breakfast/lunch place. One of the stores literally just seems like someone selling clothes out of boxes.

Unfortunately in this case, no one can go in and tell someone what to do with their private property. No one will open up anything half way decent in there due to most folks being scared as hell of the place.

If it were up to me I would boot some of the tenants in there when their lease is up and try to attract a different kind of shop in there. In the Worcester community I know of two different people trying to open up boutiques in the city and I am sure they would give the Midtown Mall a look see if it wasn't so unappealing to potential customers.

We can't however tell the folks who run the Midtown Mall what to do with their building. All we can hope for is that they see the fact that a different type of person is calling downtown home these days and that person is looking for more than knock off jewelry and clothes sold out of cardboard boxes.

Here is the small T+G article on the robbery. It generated alot of attention in the comments section:


Jacob said...

i loooove the midtown mall! HBML almost opened up there, but i realized that i would go crazy in a place with no natural light. who's looking to open a boutique? tell them to email me!

Mike said...

This place has always captured my imagination, despite having nothing (except the diner) that caters to me.

Here's an interview Jacob did about the Midtown Dinette:

Anonymous said...

I just heard about the robbery via [url=]volcanoboy[/url] and I'm shocked and scared.

I know that the owner of the Midtown Mall has their offices within the mall itself, so they're very much aware of what the place is like.

Not to be "Worcestery" and say "why bother?" but it is so frustrating to people here who desperately want Worcester, and especially downtown, to offer them reasons to be excited about living here. Just regarding the Midtown Mall as a start, you've got to admit that it would be quite an amazing feat to take on cleaning that place up, filling it with "cool" boutique stores and actually have them able to survive.

I'm sure those stores are there because the rent is affordable. The fact that the wares that they sell are often cheap and "out of boxes" shows you that the stores themselves either don't care or can't afford to make it any more appetizing to shop there, and therefore the demographic that does shop there is not the type to afford boutique and specialty merchandise.

If we couldn't make the Common Fashion Outlets work to our city's benefit, how can we expect the Midtown Mall to be transformed into an oasis of style in our downtown?

You're asking a lot. First the tenants have to vacate and hopefully find another place to be, where their customers can conveniently find them (preferably with a bus stop right in front.) You're asking for all of the people who have been inhabiting our downtown to disappear and be replaced by a new class of people who shop at Urban Outfitters and drink Starbucks. Then you're asking for new tenants who are willing to spend the money and energy to transform the mall into one that can generate enough business to sustain the kind of merchant/cafe/etc that would attract customers with more cash to spend....who haven't been raised knowing the fact that hanging out in downtown Worcester is scary.

I hate the fact that I think it's hard to be positive about the state of our downtown. Thank baby jesus for the people who keep wanting and trying to make it better, because it it wasn't for them, downtown might be even more like a scene out of Mad Max.

I keep thinking of how I feel when I'm down there. It's scary as hell at night. I'm even scared being down there during daylight hours, and to know that there was a major armed robbery there AT 1PM on a Thursday makes me want to be down there even less.

At best, your post has at least got me thinking about it, which is more than I could have said an hour ago.

Gabe said...

Oh I hear you. What is just as sad as the mall however is that right at a time when Worcester seems to be at a peek of progress it also seems to be at a peak of negatvity which is the worse thing that can be happening right now.

I have been aware of Worcester and it's issues for about 10 to 12 years. I have lived in the area longer but I have actually only been keeping myself up on issues for a little over a decade. I have never seen as much progress in that time as I have seen within the past year.

The car has final departed on the cross country journey towards making Worcester a place we can all be proud to call home. If we keep complaining without adding anything constructive the drivers of this car may just get out and leave it somewhere near Flint Michigan which I know none of us want. If that happens it's going to be hard to get back home.

The drivers have alot on their mind and I think the least we can do is chip in for gas, let them pick the music, and navigate. Maybe we can give them some suggestions for short cuts. Know what I mean? Let's just stop asking are we there yet or they will turn this car right around mister!

Jacob said...

hey, if you want a cool business there, the best thing to do is open one. i think the guy said that rent starts at $300, and utilities are included.

i'm not trying to be snide, i'm totally totally serious. i started a business, it was easy. in the words of the poet, start today.

and again, the mid town mall rules.

gabe, we never hang out- do you want to go to sabana's next week for lunch?

punky said...

I used to walk thru there everyday on the way to my bus stop in high school. That place was awesome! Where else can you buy nun chucks, a dream catcher, big fat gold hoop earrings with your name on them, and a shirt that says "I'm to sexy for this tee shirt" in the same store?