Memorial City Mall

Memorial City Mall is a large shopping mall in Houston, Texas, United States. It is approximately 11 miles (18 km) west of downtown Houston at the intersection of Interstate 10 and Gessner Road. The mall is in the Memorial City Management District, whose official legal name is the "Harris County Municipal Management District No. 1" under Chapter 3810 of the Texas Special District Local Laws Code. The mall is adjacent to the large Memorial Hermann Memorial City Medical Center. Constructed in the mid-1960s, the mall was renovated extensively in the early 2000s. It has since become one of the city's most popular malls.[1] The anchor stores are American Girl, Old Navy, Sun & Ski Sports, Cinemark, JCPenney, Dillard's, Macy's, and Target. There is 1 vacant anchor store that was once Sears.

Memorial City Mall
LocationHouston, Texas, United States
Coordinates29°46′52″N 95°32′22″W / 29.7811°N 95.5395°W / 29.7811; -95.5395Coordinates: 29°46′52″N 95°32′22″W / 29.7811°N 95.5395°W / 29.7811; -95.5395
Address303 Memorial City Way
Opening date1966 (56 years ago) (1966)
No. of stores and services112
No. of anchor tenants9 (8 open, 1 vacant)
Total retail floor area1,700,000 sq ft (160,000 m2).
No. of floors1 with partial upper level to Cinemark (2 in Dillard's, Forever 21, JCPenney, Macy's, and former Sears)
Public transit accessMETRO Routes 26, 39, 46, 70, 160, 161, 162


First mallEdit

When the Memorial City Mall was completed in 1966, it was a middle-market shopping venue that included a Sears store as its first anchor. The Memorial Theater, which was a single-screen cinema in operation since June 1962, was connected with the interior of the mall. A Montgomery Ward store opened in 1972 as the mall's second anchor store. Foley's opened a store in 1974 in the mall's new East Wing. Lord & Taylor opened a store in 1977 in the western side of the mall. With these additions, the mall had 1,300,000 square feet (120,000 m2) of leasable space.

Memorial City Mall was developed by MetroNational’s founder, Joseph Johnson.

Rivalry with Town & Country MallEdit

Town & Country Mall opened in 1983 at the intersection of Interstate 10 and Beltway 8, only one mile west of Memorial City Mall, The new mall featured more upscale stores, such as Neiman Marcus and Marshall Field and Company. For a time, the Town & Country Mall was considered more fashion-conscious.

To regain market share, Memorial City Mall underwent renovations and added "Fame City,"[2] which was a multi-faceted family entertainment complex with an indoor mini golf course, kiddie ride area, video game arcade, teen disco, roller skating rink, and an eight-screen Loew's Theatre. These attractions opened in 1989. The mall also began hosting specialty conventions for items such as model trains. Fame City was not successful, however, and the mall continued to decline. In 1989, Lord & Taylor closed its store and was replaced by a Mervyn's store.

Neiman Marcus announced in 1997 that it was moving its store from the Town & Country Mall to the Memorial City Mall.[3] During the construction of the Sam Houston Tollway, the visibility of the Town & Country Mall declined and access became difficult. In addition, the 1980s oil glut had a severe impact on Houston's economy and marked the beginning of the end of Town & Country Mall. The mall became less popular with shoppers as its interior became dated and important tenants like anchors Dillard's and JCPenney moved to the Memorial City Mall. Town & Country Mall closed in 2004 and was demolished shortly thereafter.


By the early 2000s, the area surrounding Memorial City Mall had returned to prosperity thanks to a US$500 million[4] renovation project that took place from 2001 to 2005.[5] During this period, over 100 retail shops were added to the complex, including five anchor stores.

In January 2001, Montgomery Ward closed its store. In November, Foley's moved into a larger, two-level store. Lord & Taylor returned to the mall in March 2002 with a two-level store.[6] The eight-screen Loew's Theater closed in 2002 after its owner, Trammell Crow Co., filed for bankruptcy in early 2001.[7]

In October 2003, an extended east concourse and a Dillard's store replaced Foley's original store, which had been demolished. Two parking garages were constructed as well. That same month, Target opened its newly constructed store on the site where the now-demolished Montgomery Ward store had stood. With the goal of "creating a total family experience", large-scale renovations of the mall continued through 2004 with the construction of a large 2,600 square feet (240 m2) play area for children and a NHL-standard sized ice rink.[8]

A new 16-screen Cinemark movie theater with stadium seating opened adjacent to Sears in May 2007.[9]

In 2005, Lord & Taylor closed its anchor space, which JCPenney moved into in February 2006. Mervyn's stopped operating in Texas in 2006, and its mall store was demolished soon thereafter. During 2009 and 2010, a skyway was constructed across Gessner Road that connected the mall to a 267-room Westin hotel under construction next to the Memorial Hermann Memorial City Medical Center. The hotel opened in March 2011.[10][11]

In 2015, Sears Holdings spun off 235 of its properties, including the Sears at Memorial City Mall, into Seritage Growth Properties.[12]

On August 22, 2018, it was announced that Sears would be closing as part of a plan to close 46 stores nationwide.[13] The store closed in November 2018.[14] After the store closed, Target, Macy’s, Dillard’s and JCPenney are remaining anchors left.



  1. ^ "Retailers banking on after-Christmas sales"Houston Chronicle, December 27, 2007
  2. ^ "- YouTube". YouTube.
  3. ^ Dallas Morning News, local and regional briefsDallas Morning News archives. Ultimately Neiman Marcus never relocated to Memorial City Mall and remained at Town & Country Mall location even after the mall closed and demolished in 2004. Neiman Marcus intended to remain as part of the new development of the mall site, but ultimately closed in 2006. Published October 25, 1997.
  4. ^ "MetroNational undertakes $500 million urban community project in Houston" Archived 2011-07-14 at the Wayback MachineNational Real Estate Investor, August 23, 2001
  5. ^ "Memorial City Mall"Houston Chronicle, November 18, 2005
  6. ^ Development Digest Archived 2011-06-13 at the Wayback MachineRetail Traffic Magazine, March 1, 2001
  7. ^ "Defunct River Oaks theater to get starring role as new retail center"Houston Business Journal, March 8, 2002
  8. ^ "Malls create 'lifestyles' in making comeback"Houston Chronicle, June 3, 2004
  9. ^ "New Cinemark theater to open in Memorial City Mall"Houston Business Journal, July 27, 2005
  10. ^ Memorial City — Latest Development Archived July 14, 2011, at the Wayback Machine, Memorial City Mall website
  11. ^ Westin Houston Hotels: The Westin Houston, Memorial City, Westin Hotels and Resorts
  12. ^ "Sears at Memorial City Mall | Seritage". Archived from the original on 2015-12-14.
  13. ^ Takahashi, Paul (2018-08-23). "Sears in Memorial City Mall to close in late October". Houston Chronicle. Retrieved 2021-04-29.
  14. ^ "Here's the list of 46 more Sears, Kmart stores to close in late 2018". WCVB. 2018-08-22. Retrieved 2021-04-29. As part of our ongoing efforts to streamline Sears Holdings’ operations, [...] we will be closing these stores in November 2018

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