Mall Businesses and Employees Feeling Economic Impact of Roof Collapse

DULUTH, Minn — Ever since the roof collapse at the Miller Hill Mall last Tuesday, dozens of businesses ranging from local stores to chain stores to Essentia have been waiting for the go to reopen their doors.  While some have been given the green light, others remain closed as workers continue to repair the damage and ensure the structural integrity of the rest of the building.  Each day these businesses are closed, business owners, employees, and customers are affected and there is a negative impact on the local economy.

“Anytime there’s any business closing, even if it’s temporary, that’s a blow to the economy.  So first and foremost of course we’re just glad that no one was hurt, and second of all, we’re just pleased to see that slowly but surely it’s starting to open back up. We’ve seen the plan for that phased opening and we have a number of members who are part of the mall community and they’re excited to get back to work and let their employees get back to work.” said Daniel Fanning, Vice President of the Duluth Area Chamber of Commerce.

Fanning tells us that some business have reached out to ask what they can do to help some of the other Chamber members up at the mall.  This level of support is something he hopes to see for these businesses from the community as a whole.

“The most important thing is safety, to make sure that they can open safely. Then once it opens back up, you know, our ask of course of the community and the region is to go support those businesses because they mean so much to our economy,” said Fanning.

Most of the mall businesses are expected to be able to reopen over the next week with no current timetable for those most affected by the roof collapse.

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