Simon Property Group, the world’s largest shopping mall owner, plans to shut down all of its retail properties at 7 p.m. Wednesday, and leave them closed until March 29.
The Indianapolis-based company said Wednesday that it made the decision “after after extensive discussions with federal, state and local officials and in recognition of the need to address the spread of COVID-19.”
Simon owns or has a stake in more than 200 retail properties in the U.S., including local centers Greenwood Park, Castleton Square, Fashion Mall at Keystone, Hamilton Town Crossing and Circle Centre.
“The health and safety of our shoppers, retailers and employees is of paramount importance and we are taking this step to help reduce the spread of COVID-19 in our communities,” David Simon, Simon’s CEO, said in written remarks.
Greenwood Mayor Mark Myers said the closure of the Greenwood Park Mall will certainly have an economic impact on the city as far as employee income and the new food and beverage tax are concerned, but couldn’t say specifically the long term effect it will have on the local economy. The health and safety of the community is more important, he said.
“It’s just something we’re going to have to live with, but I’m more worried about the health and safety of the people,” Myers said. “It’s better that people not congregate in those areas and stay home.”
Simon shares slid 22% on Wednesday afternoon, to $45.90 each, amid another tough day for the stock market.
Daily Journal reporter Emily Ketterer contributed to this report.