Store owners ask state to reopen malls

Posted at 11:18 PM, Jun 03, 2020

CHEEKTOWAGA, N.Y. (WKBW) — Malls have been closed for months across New York State because of COVID-19.

“Every single day that we are not open hurts. It hurts more and more. It kind of compounds itself,” said Nathan Mroz the owner of the BFLO Stores.

Store owners at the Walden Galleria are asking New York State to allow customers to return to shopping malls.

“We're ready. We really want to open and we'll do it safely,” added Mroz.

In Phase Two of the state’s reopen plan, only stores that have outside doors can reopen. Stores inside malls cannot. The idea, is this would put shoppers in less contact with others.

Hair salons were allowed to open this week. Ones in malls cannot.

“It's devastating,” said Marlene Gigliotto the owner of Euphoria Salon.

The news that mall salons wouldn't be allowed to reopen came as a surprise to the owner of Euphoria.

“We're getting ready to open as the same time as everyone else, and that didn't happen,” said Gigliotto.

Walden Galleria's parent company, Pyramid Management Group, released this statement on Tuesday:

"We hope the State will re-consider its surprising decision over the coming days and urge it to allow enclosed shopping centers to open alongside other retailers in Phase Two. Thousands of jobs, businesses, livelihoods and regional economies are depending on it. We are ready to open with the health and well-being of our guests, retailers and their employees a top priority."

There's no word when Malls will be allowed to reopen.