Rockaway Townsquare

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Rockaway Townsquare
Location Rockaway, New Jersey
Coordinates 40°54′25″N 74°33′14″W / 40.907°N 74.554°W / 40.907; -74.554Coordinates: 40°54′25″N 74°33′14″W / 40.907°N 74.554°W / 40.907; -74.554
Address 301 Mount Hope Road
Opening date September 1977; 40 years ago (1977-09)
Developer Copaken, White & Blitt
Management Simon Property Group
Owner Simon Property Group
No. of stores and services 150+
No. of anchor tenants 4
Total retail floor area 1,248,000 sq ft (115,900 m2)
No. of floors 2
Parking Parking lot
Public transit access Bus transport NJ Transit bus: 880
Bus transport Lakeland Bus Lines: 46, 80
Website Rockaway Townsquare

Rockaway Townsquare (commonly referred to as Rockaway Mall or Rockaway Townsquare Mall) is a two-level super regional shopping mall, located on Interstate 80 and Mount Hope Avenue in Rockaway Township, New Jersey. Rockaway Townsquare is currently owned by the Simon Property Group. It features a gross leasable area of 1,248,000 sq ft (115,900 m2),[1] placing it in the top ten among the largest shopping malls in New Jersey. It is anchored by Macy's, J.C. Penney, Sears, Raymour & Flanigan, and Lord & Taylor.

Rockaway Townsquare attracts customers from Morris, Sussex, & Warren counties and is under an hour away from New York City.

Mall history[edit]

The mall first opened on Labor Day Weekend of 1977. It was built on top of a wetland, which was not protected in New Jersey until 1988 with the passage of the New Jersey Freshwater Wetlands Protection Act, and the former Dover city landfill. A time capsule was enclosed in the interior of the mall, marked with a plaque. The contents were unveiled on August 22, 2000.[2]

Upon opening, the mall contained five large sculptures by Rita Blitt.[3] Most were located on the first floor and reached up through openings to the second. A twenty-foot stainless steel and brass American flag hung from the ceiling.[4] The silhouette of one of these sculptures, the yellow Stablitt 55, became the mall's original logo. Although the other sculptures have been removed, Stablitt 55 still stands, on the corner near the three-store strip at the entrance off the main road.

Notable stores that have since closed include: Bamberger's which was in the location currently occupied by Macy's (it was converted along with the other Bamberger's stores to the Macy's nameplate in 1986), Hahne's which was in the location currently occupied by Lord & Taylor (converted to the L&T nameplate in 1988), Child World which was occupied by Kids "R" Us after Child World went out of business in 1992, though was occupied by Office Depot after the majority of standalone KRU locations closed in 2003. (Office Depot has since closed as well; this space is currently being converted to DSW, relocating the Marketplace at Rockaway location) AMC Theatres had screens 1-6 in the location currently occupied by Forever 21 (previously F.Y.E. and Record Town) located inside the mall, as well as screens 7-12 in the location currently occupied by Best Buy in one of the many strip malls located on the perimeter road. The 1-6 screens closed in 1998 and the 7-12 screens in 2002. When the theaters originally expanded from 6 screens to 12 in February 1981, it became the first 12-screen multiplex in America.[5]

On August 25, 2009, a small plane crash-landed in the parking lot. The only injury was the pilot, who walked away and was treated.[6]

On February 20, 2010, a grease oven fire broke out at a McDonald's inside the mall, causing a brief evacuation of the mall until the fire was put out. The McDonald's is now closed. McDonald's has been replaced with Men's Wearhouse since the incident. [7]

On December 19, 2017, The Cheesecake Factory opened at the mall.[8] The space was supposed to be a Maggie McFly's Restaurant but the deal fell through earlier in 2017.[8]

Expansion[edit]

The mall has undergone several expansions since it opened. These include a strip mall in the southeast corner of the property, and a Hilton Garden Inn. The Shops at Rockaway Mall, a strip mall, opened in the corner near Interstate 80.[9]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Rockaway Townsquare". Simon Property Group, Inc. Retrieved 2011-01-28. 
  2. ^ "Rockaway Twp. Opens Door to the Past". NJ Morris County Online. 
  3. ^ [1][dead link]
  4. ^ [2][dead link]
  5. ^ Buckley, Tom. "AT THE MOVIES; How Resnais made a success with science". 
  6. ^ Schapiro, Rich (August 25, 2009). "Small plane crash-lands in New Jersey mall parking lot". Daily News. New York. Retrieved May 11, 2015. 
  7. ^ "Daily Record". Daily Record. 
  8. ^ a b "Rockaway mall Cheesecake Factory opening in two weeks". Daily Record. Retrieved 2018-04-26. 
  9. ^ "Daily Record". Daily Record.