ATLANTA - Many major shopping malls in Georgia are back open after being given the green light to reopen amid the coronavirus pandemic. For some, it's the first time they have been open since March.
That includes the following Simon Malls properties:
- Lenox Square
- Mall of Georgia/Village Shops
- Phipps Plaza
- Sugarloaf Mills
- Town Center at Cobb
Only the Calhoun Outlet Marketplace and the North Georgia Premium Outlets owned by Simon Properties opened Friday. Arbor Place Mall in Douglasville and Southlake Mall also opened up.
Simon Malls said a number of safety protocols will be in effect to ensure the safety of its shoppers and employees. That will include preemptive employee screenings, providing protective face masks for employees, encouraging staff to frequently wash their hands, and enforcing social distancing.
But Emory Marketing professor Doug Bowman said it may take weeks for the malls to figure best practices for the near future.
“If you look at Kroger, it took about two or three weeks before they figured out standard operating procedures,” Bowman said.”
Bowman also says he’s surprised the mall hasn’t announced services to limit the number of shoppers in the building
All play areas, stroller and valet stations, as well as drinking fountains will be temporarily closed.
In restrooms, every other sink and urinal will be taped off to encourage proper spacing.
Gov. Kemp allowed the statewide shelter in place order to expire as planned last Thursday night, but has announced he is extending Georgia's public health state of emergency.
Cumberland Mall, North Point Mall and Perimeter Mall are set to open Tuesday, May 5th.