Town Center at Aurora

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Town Center at Aurora
Town Center at Aurora.JPG
One of the mall's entrances.
LocationAurora, Colorado, USA
Coordinates39°42′29″N 104°49′25″W / 39.70806°N 104.82352°W / 39.70806; -104.82352Coordinates: 39°42′29″N 104°49′25″W / 39.70806°N 104.82352°W / 39.70806; -104.82352
Address14200 E. Alameda Ave.
Opening date1975
ManagementWashington Prime Group
OwnerWashington Prime Group
No. of stores and services125[1]
No. of anchor tenants4
Total retail floor area1,081,000 sq ft (100,400 m2)[2]
No. of floors2

The Town Center at Aurora (formerly known as Aurora Mall) is an enclosed, two-level regional shopping center located in Aurora, Colorado, and covers a leasable area over 1 million square feet. It lies at the center of the commercial and retail district in the area, adjacent to Aurora City Square, Aurora City Place, and Aurora Park Shopping Center, a strip mall.[3] The commercial district itself is located in central Aurora, and the mall's primary trade area includes a mostly suburban, middle-income demographic.

Anchor stores and major tenants at the mall are Dillard's, Macy's, JCPenney, Sears and Century Theatres.


Aurora Mall was developed in 1974, and was fully opened a year later in 1975. The mall is set in a typical sprawling, suburban environment, and the demographics mostly reflect that trend.[4]

In 2003, the mall announced a major two-part renovation with a cost of approximately $100 million. The first part consisted of a remodeling of the Foley's department store, to a Dillard's that replaced the former anchor.[5][6] Dillard's at Southglenn Mall closed, to move to Aurora Mall.[7] The second part involved the rest of the mall, including the construction of a new food court, re-pavement, and other site upgrades.[5][6] The renovation project was completed in 2005, and the mall reopened under its new name as Town Center at Aurora.

During the renovation project, a controversy arose regarding one of mall management's new focus on attracting a white-only clientele. A top leasing agent was recorded in a conversation with a tenant, who served food that apparently catered to an ethnic minority. The conversation seemed to provide the mall's new direction after renovations were complete: to discourage people of an ethnic minority from shopping there. City officials quickly condemned the "racist" views, and demanded an apology from Simon's management; no apology has yet been given.[8]

In June 2005, a 19-year-old girl was killed when trying to break up a fight at the mall.[9]

2012 shooting[edit]

On July 20, 2012, a mass shooting occurred at the Century 16 at Town Center at Aurora, during a midnight screening of the film The Dark Knight Rises. A gunman, dressed in tactical clothing, set off tear gas grenades and shot into the audience with multiple firearms, killing 12 people and injuring 70 others. The gunman, James Holmes, was arrested outside the cinema minutes later.[10][11] On August 24, 2015, he was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole.[12][13][14]


Due in part to the Town Center's suburban environment and demographic, the Aurora Public Schools (APS) system and Aurora's PTO are heavily involved in the mall's events and activities.

The mall sponsors a "Cash for Class" program, which awards schools within the district based on a points system. Schools can get points for submitting report cards, attendance records, and even mall purchases. All rewards are provided directly to the schools. In 2011, Town Center at Aurora awarded a total of $13,000 to nine schools.[15]

In 2009, APS announced a new computer system in a joint venture with the mall. Several kiosks were installed throughout the mall. The system allows parents to view grades, assignments, and other resources regarding their child's education, as well as to browse the mall's various shopping events.[16]


  1. ^ "About Town Center at Aurora". Simon Property Group. Retrieved February 17, 2011.
  2. ^ "Leasing Information". Simon Property Group. Retrieved February 17, 2011.
  3. ^ Diehl, Karen (March 19, 2008). "Somera Capital Acquires Aurora Park Shopping Center in Aurora, Colorado in Joint Venture with Southwestern Investment Group, Inc" (Press release). Business Wire.
  4. ^ "Town Center at Aurora" (PDF). Simon Property Group. May 3, 2010.
  5. ^ a b Thorne, Susan (September 2003). "Breaking Common Ground: Authorities, Developers Create City Center for Aurora, Colo". Shopping Centers Today. International Council of Shopping Centers.
  6. ^ a b "Aurora Mall Renovation". PCL Construction Services, Inc. Retrieved February 18, 2011.
  7. ^ Southglenn Dillard's Closing/
  8. ^ Kovaleski, Tony (August 10, 2004). "Tape Shows Aurora Mall Wanting To Weed Out Blacks". KMGH-TV. The McGraw-Hill Companies.
  9. ^ "Police Identify Victims, Suspects In Fatal Mall Shooting". KMGH. The McGraw-Hill Companies. June 22, 2005. Retrieved July 20, 2012.
  10. ^ "70 Shot In Movie Theater Mass Shooting; 12 Killed". The Denver Channel. July 20, 2012.
  11. ^ "Batman US cinema shooting: 12 dead in Colorado". BBC News. 20 July 2012. Retrieved July 20, 2012.
  12. ^ Healy, Jack (August 7, 2015). "A Life Sentence for James Holmes, Aurora Theater Gunman Who Killed 12". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. Retrieved August 7, 2015.
  13. ^ Sickles, Jason (August 7, 2015). "Theater shooting verdict: James Holmes sentenced to life in prison". Yahoo! News. Retrieved August 7, 2015.
  14. ^ Hickey, Chuck (August 26, 2015). "Max: Aurora theater shooter gets 12 life sentences plus 3,318 years". KDVR. Tribune Broadcasting. Retrieved August 26, 2015.
  15. ^ Goldstein, Adam (January 6, 2011). "APS educators excited by Town Center's 'Cash for Classes' boost". The Aurora Sentinel.
  16. ^ "APS Launches Computer Kiosks at the Town Center at Aurora" (Press release). Aurora Public Schools. December 15, 2009.

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