Schuylkill Mall Demolition Nearing Completion

NEW CASTLE TOWNSHIP, Pa. -- Officials tell Newswatch 16 the Schuylkill Mall demolition is ahead of schedule.

Newswatch 16 checked in on the demolition of the Schuylkill Mall when the project first started in January. Fast forward to now and the building is almost gone.

"They have it blocked off, but you can still see what is still standing, what doesn't seem like much," Doug Litwhiler of Ringtown said. "It looked like part of Kmart was still there and the dialysis place, but other than that, it looked like it was pretty much knocked to the ground."

The crews tearing down the building said the project is ahead of schedule and about 75 percent of the building has been torn down.

It's a sad sight for workers at the Dutch Kitchen in Frackville, including Kim Lipshaw.

"There's not too many places to shop other than Walmart around here, which is true, you have to drive a good distance to find stores," Lipshaw said.

Newswatch 16 spoke to people who work at businesses in Frackville. They said the Schuylkill Mall closing didn't affect business.

"I don't think it really affected anything because there wasn't too many stores up there for a long time," Lipshaw said. "It was mostly empty for awhile before it shut down."

Schuylkill County commissioners said that once the mall is completely torn down, two warehouses will be built in its place. They said the warehouses will add jobs to the area.

"(It's) exciting if they're bringing something that is going to bring jobs because it took away jobs," Dorothy Hogue said. "It would be nice if it brings jobs in the community."

Many of the people Newswatch 16 spoke with about the mall agree that tearing it down to make way for new business is a good idea.

"There was just barely any stores there from what it used to be and I think the days of shopping malls are pretty much coming to an end," Litwhiler said.

The demolition team said there are still two businesses operating at the mall building. They said they will relocate near the Big Lots on the property.

The project is expected to be complete by June or July.

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