HAZLE TOWNSHIP -- While a number of malls throughout northeastern and central Pennsylvania seem to be struggling, one in Luzerne County appears to be thriving.The Laurel Mall near Hazleton has five new businesses opening
The Laurel Mall near Hazleton has five new businesses opening soon and has an occupancy rate of 97%. That is higher than most malls in the country.
It's in part because there is more to do at the Laurel Mall.
New management took over about a year ago and made a bunch of noticeable changes. A new kiddie area was added. There were renovations, including the addition of seating areas and WiFi throughout the mall.
"We've done so much within the year. We've brought a lot of excitement back to the Laurel Mall within the Hazleton area," said Rocco Arruzzo, who is part of the Laural Mall management team.
With the new management, about a half dozen businesses have opened in the mall within the past year, and nearly a half dozen are coming soon. That includes a new restaurant, the cell phone store T-Mobile, and a candle shop called Rebecca's Creations.
The management company responsible for a lot of the recent success at the Laurel Mall is also the same company hired by the new owner of the Steamtown Mall.
The hope is that the formula that is working at the Laural Mall will also work in Scranton.