I believe that the Mall of America illustrates the death of Main Street. Its gross area is nearly 100 acres. It contains fours floors with over 530 stores. It also has two parking 7-story parking structures on either side of the mall to ensure accessibility. It even features an indoor amusement park along with many other entertainment attractions such as restaurants, movie theaters, and interactive exhibits. I believe this is the perfect example of how corporations are taking over Main Street.
Malls, such as this one, represent the destruction of community that Main Street instilled. The individual owned and unique “mom and pop” shops are replaced with chain retainers. A street of shops that use to consist of two to three floors buildings are now being replaced with a single massive build approximately 4 times its size. Its references the current American stereotyped lifestyle, “the bigger, the better.” In addition, the family businesses that use to exist on Main Street are becoming more difficult to keep afloat due to the expansion of corporations. Corporations have the size, money, and means of production to price their items cheaper than the average “mom and pop” shop. Due to the fact that corporations advertise their sales through mass outlets such as social media, TV advertisements, billboards, etc., they are able to attract a larger crowd of customers. However this can lead to mass chaos, such as shoe fights and trampling of individuals as herds of people sprint through open doors to get their half priced flat screen TV illustrated in “Black Friday.” I feel that malls can bring out the worst in people. Malls evoke greed whereas Main Street provides nostalgia. In my opinion, Main Street evokes family values and welcoming atmosphere.
In addition, malls also have this “gate” that we talked about in relation to Disney. They have a set amount of hours where the doors are open and closed. Yes, the shops on mainstream also have a set amount of hours, but the street is always open. In my hometown, a variety of organizations gather in the square after dark with candlelight for various activities ranges from a vigil to church prayer circle to flyer fly catching in the summertime. My square is place to gather and get to know your fellow community members. It sad to know that places like my hometown will slowly begin to dissipate due to urbanization and our economic state.