Charleston Town Center

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Charleston Town Center
Central court of Charleston Town Center
Location Charleston, West Virginia, United States
Coordinates 38°21′18″N 81°38′21″W / 38.35500°N 81.63917°W / 38.35500; -81.63917Coordinates: 38°21′18″N 81°38′21″W / 38.35500°N 81.63917°W / 38.35500; -81.63917
Opening date November 1983
Owner Forest City Enterprises pending sale to Queensland Investment Corporation
No. of stores and services 130
No. of anchor tenants 3
Total retail floor area

933,979 square feet

No. of floors 2 plus partial third level
Parking 4,000+

Charleston Town Center is an enclosed shopping mall in downtown Charleston, West Virginia, United States, with large portions converted into office space. One of the largest enclosed malls to be located in a downtown shopping district, it comprises more than 130 tenants on two levels, as well as a food court on a partial third level. Popular full-service restaurants include Chili's Bar & Grill, the Chop House, Outback Steakhouse and Tidewater Grill. Anchor stores are JCPenney and Macy's. The mall is owned by Forest City Enterprises, but on March 8, 2017 a pending sale to Australia's Queensland Investment Corporation was announced.


Charleston Town Center opened in 1983 in downtown Charleston, West Virginia, as the largest downtown-based shopping mall located east of the Mississippi River.[2] At the time, it included four anchor stores: JCPenney, Sears, Kaufmann's and Montgomery Ward. The mall remained largely unchanged until Stone & Thomas opened next to Montgomery Ward, moving from an existing location downtown. This Stone & Thomas store was later renamed Elder-Beerman when the chain was purchased in 1998, but Elder-Beerman closed it in 2000, the same year that Montgomery Ward closed.[3]

The Montgomery Ward location sat empty for some time. In 2002, plans were announced to renovate the mall. Under these plans, Dillard's (which, at the time, had no locations in West Virginia) would have opened in the former Montgomery Ward space.[4] In return, the Dillard's chain asked for a $1-a-year lease as part of an incentive package,[5] in addition to asking for $7.5 million in city loans.[6] However, the plans for a Dillard's at the mall were later canceled, and the former Montgomery Ward remained dark, while the former Elder-Beerman space was converted to a Steve & Barry's clothing store in 2002.[7]

In 2005, the retail bookstore chain Books-A-Million also expressed interest in replacing the former Montgomery Ward,[8] although this store also never came to fruition. Finally, by 2006, it was announced that BrickStreet Insurance would locate its offices in the former Montgomery Ward space, and half of the food court was closed and converted into state government offices.[9] A year later, Kaufmann's was converted to Macy's due to the acquisition of Kaufmann's then-parent company, May Department Stores. The Steve & Barry's, along with all other Steve & Barry's stores, was closed in September 2008 due to bankruptcy, the space is currently an arcade. In 2011, television station WOWK sub-leased some unused space in the Brickstreet area to relocate its TV studio. In 2017, Sears announced it would close, leaving the mall with only two anchor stores. As with the Montgomery Ward space, no tenant has yet been found and possible conversion to yet more office space has been discussed.



  1. ^ "Charleston Town Center". International Council of Shopping Centers. Retrieved 2008-10-06. 
  2. ^ "About Us". Charleston Town Center. Archived from the original on May 9, 2008. Retrieved 2008-10-06. 
  3. ^ Elmer, Joann C. (2001-07-09). "Charleston Town Center working to fill rash of empty storefronts". The State News. Retrieved 2008-10-06. 
  4. ^ Finn, Scott (2002-10-25). "Charleston, W.Va., Mall to Attract Upscale Retailers.". The Charleston Gazette. Retrieved 2008-10-06. 
  5. ^ Finn, Scott (2002-10-16). "Dillard's Wants Hefty Incentive Package to Open in Charleston, W.Va. Location.". Charleston Gazette. Retrieved 2008-10-06. 
  6. ^ Stone, Greg (2002-10-23). "Dillard's Seeks $7.5 Million City Loan to Fix Up Charleston, W.Va., Store.". The Charleston Gazette. Retrieved 2008-10-06. 
  7. ^ Wilson, Paul (2005-02-01). "Sportswear Store to Open in Charleston, W.Va.". Charleston Gazette. Retrieved 2008-10-06. 
  8. ^ Wilson, Paul (2005-02-01). "Books-A-Million looks at Charleston Town Center space.". Charleston Gazette. Retrieved 2008-10-06. 
  9. ^ Walters, Nicky (2006-12-05). "BrickStreet Insurance May Move into Charleston Town Center". WOWK TV. Retrieved 2008-10-06. 

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