PRESS RELEASE- The following is a press release from Hendon Properties:
In the aftermath of Hurricane Michael and devastating impact the storm had on the Panama City area, Panama City Mall management has been working diligently with all impacted parties,
individuals, tenants, insurance companies, lenders, and the community at-large.
While certain spaces in the Mall were damaged less than other portions, most of the Mall including the Common Areas, sustained significant storm and wind damage. Above all, water damage throughout was catastrophic.
Immediately after the storm, third party experts, engineers, and consultants were retained to assist with stabilizing the Mall, assessing integrity of structural and mechanical systems, and testing moisture infiltration.
In the weeks since, the vast majority of tenants have removed inventory and fixtures from their leased premises
providing an opportunity for Mall Management to assess the full extent of damage.
“It is with a heavy heart we announce our decision to keep Panama City Mall closed for the foreseeable future.
This decision is an extremely difficult one for us because we know it impacts the community and our dedicated
on-site employees. Unfortunately, the order of magnitude to rebuild comes at too great a cost. It is
economically unfeasible to rebuild as the cost far exceeds the repaired value of the mall” said Charlie Hendon,
President of Hendon Properties. “We’ve been fortunate to serve customers here for the last 42 years and are
humbled by the meaningful relationships fostered in that time.”
The closure of Panama City Mall does not include the adjacent Shoppes at Panama City or the Starbucks/Vitamin
Shoppe Outparcel. New York’s Famous Pizza reopened on Black Friday and Moe’s Southwest Grill reopened this
past Saturday. Construction is well underway in Best Buy, America’s Best Contacts & Eyeglasses, Palm Beach
Tan, Wayback Burger, and Lisa’s Nails. Re-opening dates will be announced shortly.
Mall Ownership has entered into preliminary discussions with Planet Fitness and Bed Bath & Beyond to identify
options to operate as outside tenants through the transition and to engage their support for a future
redevelopment of the site. “Our customers have expressed time and again the need for a relevant, experiential
shopping destination in Panama City, east of the Hathaway Bridge.” said Charlie Hendon. “This community
deserves all options be explored.” Any redevelopment plan will also require Mall Ownership to reach
agreements with Dillard’s, JCPenney, and Sears (Sertiage) who own their respective buildings and parcels.
Dillard’s has expressed intentions to remain open and JCPenney plans to rebuild and reopen next year. A
timeline for building demolition is not yet determined.