ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — All three malls in the Rochester area are set to reopen Friday.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced Wednesday that malls in phase four regions could reopen Friday if they had proper HVAC systems and measures in place.
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Officials from Wilmorite, owners of Eastview, The Mall at Greece Ridge, and The Marketplace Mall, say they ave the required systems and filters in place and are ready to reopening Friday.
Officials say not all stores will be open Friday “due to the short notice given by New York state,” adding that it could take some retailers one or two weeks before they are ready to full reopen.
From Wilmorite officials:
“A thorough reopening plan was developed and is being implemented across all of our properties. Some of the highlights of the plan include:
- Adjusted mall hours to allow for thorough overnight cleaning and less staffing.
The temporary hours will be:
- Mondays-Saturdays: 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.
- Sundays: 12 p.m. to 6 op.m. (no early admittance)
- Pittsford Plaza retailers and restaurants’ hours may vary
- Extensive cleaning and sanitizing focusing on touch points.
- Use of EPA and CDC recommended disinfectants.
- Touchless amenities:
- At least 3 hands free mall entrances.
- 20+ touchless hand sanitizing stations strategically placed throughout the malls.
- Touchless restroom fixtures.
- Social distancing and mask wearing reminders throughout the malls.
- Limited seating areas that are strategically spaced for social distancing.
- The food court seating will remain closed, but the food court restaurants are permitted to open for take-out.
- Staff training to include vigilant frequent cleaning, hand washing, mask wearing, glove wearing as needed, employee health monitoring and symptom reporting.
- Temporary closure of some services/amenities including the children’s play areas, carousels, public pay phones, drinking fountains, and customer service centers.
“Shoppers should feel comfortable visiting our properties,” said Wilmorite Vice President of Operations in a press release. :The malls have been thoroughly cleaned and disinfected, and a solid plan has been put in place for maintaining a safe environment moving forward. We have all the required MERV filters already in place. The large square footage of the malls naturally lends itself to social distancing. The width of the common areas ranges from 20 to 30 feet wide, which is about three times the width of the aisles in grocery and hardware stores. We are a big part of the Rochester community and our high standards will be visible to shoppers when they visit.”
While some retailers won’t be ready, others are eagerly awaiting their chance to reopen, like Reza Sattari, who operates Oriental Rug Mart in Eastview Mall.
“I’m so happy,” Sattari said Wednesday. “I think most of Rochester is ready for this.”
His store can welcome shoppers come Friday after months of no foot traffic.
Sattari says he is confident it’s safe to shop.
“Everyone here has a face mask we have touch-less hand sanitizer we do have the touch-less thermometers so we can check ourselves.”
New safety measures at Eastview include 25 sanitation stations, social distancing stickers and touch-less entry doors.
“We’ve been waiting for this day for a long time, it’s been about four months that we’ve been closed, so we’re obviously thrilled to get opened and our merchants are really excited they’ve been very anxious to get the doors open,” said Eastview General Manager Mike Kauffman.
“The mall has been ready for months, they are ready and we are ready,” Sattari added.