SCRANTON -- The owner of The Mall at Steamtown hopes a new name will help turn around that troubled shopping center in Scranton's downtown. The name change was made official Tuesday morning.
Some of the signs have been up for a few days. The new name for the Mall at Steamtown is the Marketplace at Steamtown. The thinking is this is more than a mall.
One downtown shopper said a new name doesn't make a lot of difference.
"Now, it's dead down here. Nobody comes down here. Nobody comes down or chill or anything. It's crazy," said Kim Ragona of Scranton.
Mall owner John Basalyga is out to change all that, mixing in non-traditional tenants -- including a gym and a college -- to go along with the original mall anchor Boscov's.
Another downtown shopper, Nate Warshawsky, hopes for the best, with a new name and a new future.
"If I had to say one way or another, it's good it's changed, and I hope we get a lot of good stores in there."
The mall's owner explained how the new name came about.
"A lot of thought a lot of meetings," said John Basalyga. "(We) looked up a lot of synonyms online, so we're pretty happy with it. I think it fits."
Still, there are skeptics, believing the new name won't help much.
"You change the name; it's not going to change the stores in there. It's not going to change the surroundings or anything in there. You're just changing the name of the building," said Jennifer Ragona of Scranton.
The signs on the mall, and on mall property, aren't the only ones that need to be changed to the new name.
According to PennDOT, the mall owner will have to request a change to signs along highways, and pay for the new signs. It will not cost taxpayers.
Work is underway to convert part of the old BonTon space on the second floor to the Scranton campus for Luzerne County Community College.