Much like a phoenix, dead mall space has found new life. As big-box stores have closed over the past few years, they’ve been repurposed in new forms to answer the needs of their surrounding communities. This year, Credit Suisse predicts 8600 brick-and-mortar stores will shutter. Commercial real estate services firm Transwestern calculates that dark boxes, averaging 130,000 sq. ft. each, will bring 32.4 million sq. ft. of space to the market in 2017.

“Because big box spaces are the most difficult to fill, most of these dark department stores will have to be subdivided or repurposed,” Transwestern researchers write in their June 2017 report, Why Mall Reuse is Just the Beginning.

Here are 12 malls that have given their unused or underperforming space new form and purpose, according to Transwestern research.


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