Owner of Walden Galleria asks state to allow reopening of malls

Cheektowaga
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CHEEKTOWAGA, N.Y. (WIVB) — Pyramid Management Group, the owner of the Walden Galleria and several other malls, released a statement on Tuesday.

The statement comes as western New York enters Phase Two of the state’s reopening schedule.

This phase allows people to shop inside retail stores, but malls are still shut down.

Pyramid says “re-opening is key to the survival of these retailers, many of which are locally owned and are now in grave danger of never being able to open their doors.”

They also say that the malls’ open spaces “easily” allow for social distancing, helping reduce the density in stand-alone stores.

“Our tenants and their employees are anxious to get back to work,” Pyramid wrote in the statement.

Here is the full statement:

“Over the last several weeks we have worked with hundreds of businesses to ensure a safe and responsible re-opening consistent with the detailed phasing plan released by New York State.

Our collective investment of time and money into safely and responsibly re-opening our centers was considerable. What’s more, our retailers and their employees were anticipating the scheduled Phase Two re-opening today as a way to get back to work and begin supporting their families and our local economies. Re-opening is key to the survival of these retailers, many of which are locally owned and are now in grave danger of never being able to open their doors.

What’s more, we believe our very large open spaces easily facilitates social distancing and will lessen the density in stand-alone stores that are allowed to re-open in Phase Two. Additionally, not all of our tenants will be reopening in Phase Two. Restaurants and entertainment venues, which comprise a good portion of our facilities, will remain closed until subsequent phases. By design, this will further lessen the density of guests in our centers.

Our extensive safety protocols put into place over the past two months meet or exceed State, CDC and national health guidelines to protect the health, safety and well-being of everyone. And our tenants and their employees are anxious to get back to work.

We hope the State will re-consider its surprising decision over the coming days and urge it to allow enclosed shopping centers to open alongside other retailers in Phase Two. Thousands of jobs, businesses, livelihoods and regional economies are depending on it. We are ready to open with the health and well-being of our guests, retailers and their employees a top priority.”

Pyramid Management Group

Evan Anstey is a digital content producer who has been part of the News 4 team since 2015. See more of his work here.

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