The proposed mall project expected to be built in southeast El Centro as early as 2004 continues to spark an interest and there is talk such major department stores as Robinsons-May and Dillard's will be anchors of the mall.
This good news should inspire residents from all over Imperial County to support the project. A mall of this size and caliber would benefit the entire county and beyond through job creation and economic development. We look forward to seeing the project take shape.
The proposed mall, however, has raised concerns, particularly among some in El Centro, that the project could harm other businesses and shopping areas as some of the department stores already housed in El Centro might move to the new mall. That is a concern. El Centro already has several "big box" buildings that are vacant, doing little but gathering dust and graffiti. Valley Plaza Shopping Center, which has some flourishing businesses, has too many vacancies. A mall might cause even more in that shopping center, particularly since JCPenney Co., a cornerstone of Valley Plaza, is rumored to be considering the move to the new mall.