WRECKING MALL: What will sprout from Regency’s ruins?
AUGUSTA, Ga. (WRDW/WAGT) - Eighteen years ago, Regency Mall closed its doors and took a lot of south Augusta’s synergy with it. But now, it finally seems some changes may be in store for this area.
“They call us like the sunflower in the desert. The one thing that’s you know that kind of popped up that’s nice along Gordon Highway,” said Tammi Kamae, owns Hawaiian Style BBQ. And right across the street from her restaurant is where you’ll find what’s left of Regency Mall.
Once a thriving shopping center, it now sits as an empty reminder of what used to be. And now demolition is underway at the old mall.
“It was the best mall in Augusta coming up, you know we used to go trick or treating and all that in the mall, you know, until all the violence started happening in the mall. It was good while it lasted,” an Augusta resident named Jordan said.
50 acres of property sat unused for years, but according to Augusta’s Economic Development Department, something is in store for the old mall and the bulldozers are demolishing buildings to prove it.
“I’m just looking forward to something really happening over there you know. Just instead of it being a blank space you know it’s something that Augusta needs,” Kamae said.
The department couldn’t tell us what the plans are, but documents show there was a demolition permit issued for the property earlier this month. One that is underway right now.
The property doesn’t belong to the city, it’s owned by a company in New York. So the question is: What will become of the mall?
“I hope they use it for the betterment of the community,” Jordan said.
In the past, there were talks of relocating the James Brown Arena, creating a James Brown museum or movie studios, but nothing ever happened.
“I know that if something like that was to be developed, that it can only help more people come towards this side of town,” Kamae said.
Copyright 2020 WRDW/WAGT. All rights reserved.