West Pullman and Farm Roads
Idaho's fourth shopping mall was built on a 45 acre site, located 1.2 miles west of downtown Moscow. This city is located in the northern "Panhandle" section of the Gem State.
PALOUSE EMPIRE MALL originated with a single-level strip center, that occupied land owned by the University of Idaho. The center, developed by Spokane's Earl McCarthy, was dedicated in October 1976. Three tenants leased the 84,000 square foot structure; a (40,300 square foot) Kmart, (23,000 square foot) Rosauer's supermarket and (20,700 square foot) Pay 'n Save Drug.
An enclosed mall of 250,700 leasable square feet was added to the west side of the existing strip center. This addition opened to the public October 3, 1979. Comprised of a single level of retail, the expansion was anchored by a 1-level (39,200 square foot), Bellevue, Washington-based Lamonts, 1-level (38,500 square foot) J.C. Penney and 1-level (37,400 square foot), Seattle-based The Bon Marche.
A 1-level (37,200 square foot) Ernst Home Center was added, as a western outparcel, in 1980. The completed mall measured 334,700 leasable square feet. There were over fifty stores and services.
Over the years, changes were made at PALOUSE EMPIRE MALL. In 1996, the center's name was truncated to simply PALOUSE MALL. Kmart had pulled out of the complex September 27, 1995.
The store was expanded to 52,300 square feet and re-opened, as a Salem, Oregon-based Waremart Foods, July 22, 1996. J.C. Penney was shuttered August 1, 1998. Eugene, Oregon-based Troutman's Emporium renovated the building a opened their thirty-first location there on September 5, 1998.
The Lamonts chain was acquired by Fresno-based Gottschalks in April 2000. On August 26, 2000, Gottschalks rebranded the PALOUSE MALL Lamonts. The Troutman's store began liquidating in February 2003 and eventually re-opened as a Ross Dress For Less. The Bon Marche was rebranded as a Bon-Macy's on August 1, 2003 and became a bona fide Macy's March 6, 2005.
Gottschalks closed their PALOUSE MALL store January 27, 2007. The structure was demolished and replaced by Old Navy and Bed, Bath & Beyond. These opened August 14 and 15, 2007.
Presently, the physical structure of PALOUSE MALL is owned by the family of Earl McCarthy. Spokane-based Jameson Commercial Management handles its leasing. The center houses forty-one stores and services, with eight outparcel tenants. The mall's Macy's was shuttered in April 2016. As of early 2017, the store is still vacant.
"The Bon Marche", "Lamonts" and "Gottschalks" articles on Wikipedia
The Lewiston Morning Tribune
Moscow-Pullman Daily News