UPDATED: Two stores closing at Highland Square Mall, another moving

Adam MacInnis webcomments@ngnews.ca
Published on February 19, 2014
Charlene Canning stands by the shelves that are quickly emptying at Carleton Cards in the Highland Square Mall. They are going to close Feb. 26.
ADAM MACINNIS – THE NEWS

Two more stores in the Highland Square Mall are planning to close and a third is relocating. According to the mall's website, there are now 13 vacant spots in the building.

Carlton Cards and Smart Set will both be closing Feb. 26, employees confirmed Wednesday.

Charlene Canning has worked at Carlton Cards for the last nine years. Over the last week she's watched the shelves at the store quickly empty as ‘75 per cent off’ signs drew customers. With each card that sells she knows the end of her job is coming closer.

"The closer it comes, the sadder it gets," she said.

There were five employees of the store.

“I think we’re one of the original stores in the mall,” she said.

She said they had a lot of repeat customers they're going to miss. She remembers many holidays when people would come in to find a special card or gift. More than once she’s helped point a man in the right direction for Valentine’s.

“We had people that called, ‘if I give you a list will you find them for us?’ because they’re used to us,” she said. ”People are going to miss the personal one-on-one.”

Smart Set and Carlton Cards don’t have plans to open anywhere else.

Sparkles Entertainment Centre in the mall is also leaving, but they’re going to a new location behind the Hyundai dealership and across from the Wellness Centre that’s currently under construction.

“We’re hoping to be in there by around the middle of April provided we don’t have another storm every week,” said Central Amusement owner Christian Keay.  “The winter certainly hasn’t been the greatest winter for building.”

He said his company has been in the Highland Square Mall for 25 years and in New Glasgow since 1947. He said they’ve had a great relationship with the management at the mall during their time there.

“Crombie has been a terrific partner,” he said.

But he said proposed developments, including the possibility of a larger store moving to the section of the mall where their current location is, led them to start thinking about moving.

He sees it as positive situation though and an opportunity for them to move to a high traffic location. It’ll also allow them to double their size and to add some new attractions. Also housed in the building they’re moving to will be a modern family-style diner.

As they get closer to the opening date he said they’ll be releasing more information.

amacinnis@ngnews.ca

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