RIP Downtown Chatham Centre

King Street Commons outside Downtown Chatham Centre (ca. 2015)

The Downtown Chatham Centre, known to locals as simply “The Mall” was at one time a thriving retail landscape filled with shops of all kinds. Nowadays it is a shadow of it’s former self. Rumors have been running rampant all around town in regards to it’s future that run the gamut from the mall being turned into apartments to it being turned into a mosque.

I remember that there were shops of all sorts in it’s long history including:

  • Toys & Wheels
  • Grand & Toy
  • People’s Jewelers
  • Northern Reflections
  • A&W
  • Nick’s Pizza
  • Imagination Ink.
  • Sears
  • Subway
  • Crumbles
  • Sizzling Wok
  • Things Engraved
  • Charm Diamond Centers
  • Collins
  • Tip Top Tailors
  • Cole’s
  • Smithbooks
  • Jose’s Six Cent Shop
  • Bell
  • Rogers
  • Hallmark Cards
  • Laura Secord
  • The Source
  • Radio Shack
  • Sport Chek
  • Miracle Food Mart
  • Food Basics
  • Carlton Cards
  • Precious Cargo
  • Ella Minnow Pea
  • Foot Locker
  • Randy River

It all started in 1981 after the land that Harrison Hall (aka Old City Hall) was on after the council moved to the Civic Center aka The Wedge was demolished to make way for the mall and it was thought of as progress.

Old City Hall ca. 1960’s Postcard
New City Hall (Present Location)
Construction Of The Mall Starts in 1981

but ask any Chathamite today though and they will probably tell you it is one of the most boring places in the city, the following video was posted by a local blogger who happens to think just that:

From what I have been told (I haven’t been there in ages) all that remains is Subway, Charm Diamond Centers, Hart Department Store, the phone kiosks and two specialty shops, the rest of the mall is pretty much a ghost town.

Update: February 6, 2020: The Chatham Center Mall is trying to rebound but they are asking for patience More Info via Blackburn News Chatham-Kent

Add a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *