Under Gov. Mike DeWine's Responsible RestartOhio plan, consumer and retail services are allowed to reopen on Tuesday, May 12. And that includes malls.
Both the indoor Kenwood Towne Centre and Tri-County Mall plan to reopen that date, with health and safety measures in mind.
Under the governor's sector-specific guidelines, retail and consumer operations must require employees to have a minimum of six feet between themselves — or a barrier — and they must wear face coverings except for in a handful of cases.
If an employee is not wearing a face mask, they must provide written justification upon request as to why.
Employees also need to perform daily symptom assessments, regularly wash their hands, clean high-touch items and use hand sanitizer.
Retail operations also need to stagger the entry of guests, place hand sanitizers in high-contact spots for guests to use, specify hours for at-risk populations, ensure social distancing and tell guests not to enter if they are symptomatic.
They should also consider asking customers to wear facial coverings at all times — and make those coverings available — and suspend their return policies.
So how are both of the malls handling meeting these requirements?
Tri-County seems to have the most descriptive plan in place. According to their website:
We want you to know that Tri-County Mall is closely monitoring the COVID-19 outbreak. Our team is in close communication with the City of Springdale’s Health Commissioner and we will continue to observe all applicable recommendations that are issued at the state and federal levels (including the Centers for Disease Control and the World Health Organization). Maintaining a safe and healthy environment for our tenants and shopping community is our top priority...
We ask that all customers entering Tri-County Mall after our reopening, please follow Governor DeWine’s Responsible Restart Ohio guidelines. We ask that customers wear masks or facial coverings, while shopping and visiting the mall. We also ask that everyone maintain the six-foot social distancing guideline between other customers and employees. Keeping our mall employees and guests safe is of the utmost importance to us, so if you are sick or symptomatic, we ask that you please stay at home.
Tri-County Mall will be mandating that all mall employees are adhering to Governor DeWine’s Responsible Restart Ohio guidelines. All mall employees will perform daily symptom assessments. We will be requiring that sick or symptomatic employees stay at home. We are recommending that all employees wear facial masks or covering and wash their hands regularly during their shifts. We will be asking all our tenants to clean their merchandise before stocking it and to perform nightly deep cleanings of their stores. All stores will be monitoring to ensure that they do not allow more than 50% of their maximum occupancy inside of their store at once.
Tri-County Mall will be ramping up our cleaning services to assure that all areas remain clean and sanitized. We will be posting Governor DeWine’s Responsible Restart Ohio guidelines throughout the mall. We will be working closely with the City of Springdale’s Health Department to report any suspected or confirmed cases or exposures.
You can read their full update and what else they're doing to ensure safety at tricountymall.com/covid-19-update.
Kenwood Towne Centre
The Kenwood Towne Centre is also reopening on Tuesday, but has a less clear plan outlined.
The mall will be open from 11 a.m.-7 p.m. Monday through Saturday and noon-6 p.m. Saturday.
"New measures have been implemented to help ensure the health and safety for all who enter the mall, including hand-sanitizing stations, touch-free interactions, frequent and intense cleanings and social distancing directions," said Rachel Wille, senior public relations and social media specialist for Brookfield Properties Retail (which owns the KTC), via email. "We are working diligently to provide a safe, clean environment where people feel comfortable shopping, dining and enjoying their time. Per the governor’s order, dining tenants that choose to open, including those in the food court, will be available for carry-out service only."
See a list of open retailers at kenwoodtownecentre.com.
Crestview Hills Town Center
Because Crestview is an outdoor mall, it has been leaving operating schedules up to its tenants.
And this is the message from Rookwood Pavilion/Commons:
As Rookwood is home to several vital community resources including a grocery, medical workers, residents and office workers, at this time, we remain open for business. Some of our restaurants and retailers are making individual decisions to alter their operations or close temporarily, which we respect and understand. We will also be adhering to any city, state and national governmental directives. It is a rapidly changing situation and we will make decisions based on the safety of the Rookwood Commons & Pavilion community.
In that regard, we are closely following the recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the World Health Organization (WHO). Here are some of the precautionary measures we are taking to minimize health risks to our guests, our staff and our community:
- Strategic shift coverage so that any employees showing signs of being unwell remain at home.
- Continued staff education on diligent hand-washing, social distancing (staying 6 feet apart) and other health guidelines recommended by the CDC and WHO.
Just as we ask our employees to stay home if they are sick, we kindly ask the same from you, our valued guests. As we navigate these uncertain times, please stay safe and healthy and we thank you for doing your part to keep our community well. Please stay up to date with Rookwood Commons & Pavilion on our website and on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.