Jcpenney Air Conditioning Commercial I’ll Go Today

Jcpenney Air Conditioning Commercial I’ll Go Today – Bradenton’s DeSoto Square traces the rise and death of what was once a center of commerce and culture.

A JCPenney store similar to this one in California was one of the original locations of DeSoto Square Mall when it opened in 1973. [AP]

Jcpenney Air Conditioning Commercial I’ll Go Today

Jcpenney Air Conditioning Commercial I'll Go Today

BRADENTON. As a teenager in the mid-1980s, Iris Pitnikoss worked at Ritz Camera, a film and photo equipment store in Manatee County’s DeSoto Square Mall.

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It sold cameras—professional devices like Nikons and Kodaks, as well as smaller models like Fujifilms that were more for everyday photography. The shop also has machines that cannot process negatives within an hour.

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“We’ve been busy out there, a lot of film to print, and that’s an hour of photography,” Pitnikoss said. “I’ve always liked Nikon cameras, so it’s fun to sell them.”

When she finished work, her boyfriend at the time, Daryl Solodar, would sometimes wait for her in the lobby of the mall with carnations. He drove more than an hour from his home in Clearwater to see her after work.

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Finally, Daryl asked her to marry him. Iris Pitnikos becomes Iris Solodar. At their wedding, the photographer was the manager of Ritz Camera. Back then, everyone at the store was into photography, including Iris, who went on to pursue a career in sports photography.

Stories like Solodar’s are typical of people who came of age in the second half of the 20th century. Malls like DeSoto Square were the hubs of everyday life. In addition to being a place for shopping, they are culturally important, important for growth, economic activity, travel and social relations.

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Of course you can go there to buy things. Stores like Vogue, Lane Bryant, Waldenbooks and Camelot Music in DeSoto Square always have the latest in fashion and entertainment. But it is more than that.

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The mall has movie theaters, theaters, dining options, and plenty of space for events like high school proms and science fairs, home decor shows, political debates, and celebrity visits. This is the community center where Ronald Reagan held a rally during his 1976 presidential campaign.

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As important as Bradenton was, however, DeSoto Square Mall eventually struggled. From its opening day in 1973 until the early 21st century, when things really began to decline, DeSoto Square Mall followed the mall’s rise and fall as a center of American commerce and culture.

DeSoto Square Mall was built in an era that can be called a prosperous American shopping center.

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The widespread use of automobiles and the construction of the interstate highway system after the end of World War II led to population growth in suburbs built by mostly white families, said Tom Fisher, director and head of Minnesota Design University. College of Minnesota. design, said.

Austrian architect Viktor Gruen, who immigrated to the United States during the rise of Nazi Germany, saw that this new suburban population wanted to shop close to where they lived.

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“In the suburbs, there are several shops in the middle of a sea of ​​parking lots. (Grün) believes that the suburbs deserve a walkable, urban-like environment,” Fisher said. “He wants people to get out of their cars and walk, as he experienced when he was young in Europe.”

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The first shopping center in the United States, Southdale Center in Edina, Minnesota, was opened in 1956, designed by Grune. Although it is a closed indoor center, it also has touches that reflect the outdoor environment, such as an eagle, a fish pond and a cafe.

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“Basically, it’s trying to recreate the real street, but it’s doing it in an enclosed, air-conditioned environment,” Fisher said.

It was Gruen who came up with the idea of ​​placing competing stores at the end of the mall. It’s designed to bring more people in, give them a choice and encourage them to walk into the mall’s hallways and see other, smaller tenants along the way, Fisher said.

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Grune’s mall design would continue to be copied by other architects and developers for the next several decades.

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“What’s happening in a lot of communities is that shopping centers are being built near U.S. freeway exits or intersections that are being built or redeveloped, and they’re very successful,” said Mark A. Cohen, director of retail research at Columbia University. higher school of business.

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Malls have also sprung up in the specialty-store and chain-store industries, Cohen said. They were created to fill small spaces in shopping centers between the main stores.

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“Some specialty stores are downtown, but a lot of them are national stores, like The Limited,” he said.

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As a result, once bustling urban areas began to become hollow. It didn’t happen all at once — like the growth of suburban malls, it happened slowly and steadily over about 30 years in the mid-to-late 20th century, Cohen said. Many cities have more than one mall in different parts of the city — and both were successful at the time

“Local stores are shrinking because they do business downtown. Or they close shops in the city. And mom-and-shops, or local stores that do business downtown in general, may find a way to move into the mall, or they’ll go out of business,” Cohen said.

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In the early 1970s, word of the mall spread around the Bradenton area. In November 1971, a company called the Bradenton Mall Corporation purchased about 100 acres at US 301 and Cortez Road for $1.6 million from 32 landowners.

Bradenton officials, including Mayor A.K. Leach worried about how suburban malls would affect downtown merchants. But, Leach said, traders have been through a lot, including the Great Depression, the 1926 hurricane and “the attack of Mediterranean fruit.”

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But gradually, downtown Bradenton became less of a retail center and more of a professional services city. And Bradenton isn’t the only one feeling this change.

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“This has caused stores to locate new locations close to where people live and still be easily accessible by car,” said Steve Kirn, a retired professor at the University of Florida. “So the basic design of a mall with a cluster of stores in the middle surrounded by an ocean of parking because people now have cars and they can go there, ‘Wow, that’s exciting.’

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And if anyone knows how to capitalize on that excitement, it’s the builders of DeSoto Square Mall.

His name is Edward J. DeBartolo. He was born in Youngstown, Ohio in 1909 to an Italian family. He is known to work 15 hours a day during the week, 10 to 12 hours on Saturday and seven hours on Sunday, according to the New York Times.

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In 1972, the year before DeSoto Square opened, the Edward J. DeBartolo Company built a 4,231,670-square-meter shopping center in the United States. That year, the company’s assets were approximately $300 million; The pipeline projects at the time are expected to cost $450 million.

Like any good developer, DeBartolo did his homework. And that homework gave him a special connection to Florida. In 1973, he told the New York Times Magazine that a population and age study his company had done in the Sunshine State proved it was more than a place for retirees.

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“Boy, this state is really something,” he told the Times. “It jumped out of the skin. Land prices are high, but I’ve got news for you: they’re going to be much higher In my opinion, to be honest, this Florida lunatic is still in its infancy. you hear me in his childhood.”

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Stan Ruthstein, a Manatee-based commercial real estate broker with years of experience in the retail industry, said DeBartolo is the kind of developer who will tell you what you’re doing, not ask.

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“We’ll be in the conference room with Mr. DeBartolo. It will be before him – eight cities, seven cities where he will build shopping centers. And you say, “That’s great, we love it, we’ll take this city, that city, and this city.” said Ruthstein. “Until you get this, you won’t get that.”

Rutstein said the mall that will become DeSoto Square is not one of DeBartolo’s best-known properties. It’s more like a place where you have to set up shop if you want a place in its vibrant development.

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As can be seen from the name of the company, the original shopping center

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