JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (WJHL)- Gradual re-opening of the region’s economy continues as more stores re-open their doors to the public. While stores were officially able to re-open starting last Wednesday, the Mall at Johnson City chose to wait a week to open its doors.
As of 11 a.m. Monday, select stores in the Mall at Johnson City are now open to the public. About 25% of the mall, which means a little over 20 storefronts and kiosks are now re-opened. However, some big-box, corporate stores do remain closed at this time.
For those who chose to re-open, they are taking the proper safety measures when it comes to staff and customers. Along with signs posted throughout the mall encouraging restrictions put into place by the CDC, individual stores are also enforcing policies, some eve going as far as restricting trying items on and adjusting their return policy.
A majority of the stores re-opening are encouraging patrons to wear masks. “We have everything ready to go to sanitize after every customer and we are encouraging that our customers wear masks and we are, as employees, wearing masks the entire time the store is open,” said Pretty as a Peach Boutique Area Manager, Katie Wilt.
Mercantile 423 is locally owned and operated and doesn’t have a large online presence, so management said opening back up is a blessing. However, if it’s the right time to start returning to business as usual is still up in the air.
“I don’t know that there is a right time to open, everything is so unknown that I think everyone’s kind of just winging it,” said Mercantile 423 Owner, Stephanie Cox.
Along with increased signage, mall management told News Channel 11 there is increased sanitation throughout the day. While they have no set date for when all the stores will reopen, they’re in no rush. “The safety of our community is priority so we’ll welcome people back in their due time when their corporate offices deem that it’s safe and acceptable for them to open,” said Mall at Johnson City General Manager, Ashley Grindstaff.
With these new changes, the Mall at Johnson City has also adopted special operating hours. Those are Monday through Saturday 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. and noon to 6 on Sunday.
To find out exactly which stores are open, you’re encouraged to call the mall, that number is 423-282-2830.