HARUNDALE MALL
Governor Ritchie Highway and Aquahart Road
Anne Arundel County (Glen Burnie), Maryland

Noteworthy as the first fully-enclosed, climate-controlled shopping center east of the Mississippi, HARUNDALE MALL was developed on a 33 acre tract, located 9 miles south of downtown Baltimore. The site was situated in a section of unincorporated Anne Arundel County known as Glen Burnie.

The shopping facility was a component of Harundale, a 1,200 home, Post-War housing development. The name Harundale was derived from the French word for a swallow..."l'hrondelle'. In fact, a swallow bird was depicted on the original HARUNDALE MALL logo.

Designed by the the firm of Rogers, Taliaferro & Lamb, the 10 million dollar complex was the first to be built under the auspices of Community Research & Development, a subsidiary of the James W. Rouse Company. The "Anne Arundel Shopping Center" project was a joint venture of Mr. Rouse and Baltimore's Jack Meyerhoff and Charles Steffey.

HARUNDALE MALL held its official grand opening October 1, 1958, with a great deal of fanfare. John F. Kennedy, then a junior US Senator from Massachusetts, was on hand to cut the ceremonial ribbon.

Anchoring the 317,800 square foot shopping hub was a 2-level (102,300 square foot), Baltimore-based Hochschild-Kohn department store, which occupied its northeast corner. There were also a (39,000 square foot) G.C. Murphy 5 & 10, (22,000 square foot) S.S. Kresge 5 & 10, (24,000 square foot) Food Fair supermarket and (10,600 square foot) Read's Drug.

HARUNDALE MALL housed a total of thirty-two store spaces and eight "on the mall" kiosks. A freestanding strip center, which had been built in 1950, encompassed 21,300 square feet, with nine store spaces, and included Eddie's Market, Allen Drug and the White Coffee Pot Cafe.

The mall structure was centered on two court areas. The Garden Court was in the northern part of the complex. It featured a large rock, which was the centerpiece of a tropical planter, fountain and 35-foot-high bird aviary. Hochschild-Kohn's Severn Room terrace restaurant overlooked this area. A Community Room and the mall office were part of a second level that was accessed from a Garden Court stairway that wrapped around two sides of the fountain.

As a footnote, an urban legend circulated a few years after the opening of the mall. It told of mynah birds in the aviary that had been taught several off-color words by local teenagers. The "cursing mynahs", and their cage, were eventually removed.

The South Court was flanked by the G.C. Murphy, S.S. Kresge, Oppenheim-Collins and Sherwin-Williams stores and included a sunken Sidewalk Cafe.

The General Cinema Corporation Cinema at Harundale Mall showed its first feature July 16, 1964. The venue was located on a pad across Aquahart Road from the shopping center. It was twinned in the spring of 1973 and shuttered in May 1989.

HARUNDALE was the premier shopping destination in the southern environs of Greater Baltimore for several years. The opening of GLEN BURNIE MALL (1964) {2.5 miles north, in Anne Arundel County} did not result in any measurable loss of business.

It would be 23 years before HARUNDALE would face true competition. This came in 1987, with the completion of MARLEY STATION MALL (1987) {.8 mile south, in Anne Arundel County}. It wasn't long before tenants at HARUNDALE began to move to MARLEY.

Hochschild-Kohn at HARUNDALE MALL was sold to Baltimore-based Hutzler's in April 1984. This store was rebranded and downsized to a Hutzler's Discount Store in September 1988. It closed the following December. Richmond, Virginia-based Value City opened in the (53,000 square foot) first floor in 1989.

By this time, most of the original tenants at HARUNDALE had long since vacated. Food Fair had been converted to a Panty Pride in 1970 and was eventually shuttered. G.C. Murphy was rebranded as a McCrory variety store in 1990. The Hochschild-Kohn Severn Room restaurant had become a Horn & Horn Cafeteria. New tenants, circa-1993, included Athletic Express, Afterthoughts Boutique and Dollar Tree.

The Rouse Company put the struggling center up for sale in April 1995. It was acquired by the Columbia, Maryland-based Manekin Corporation in December 1997. They decided to raze the aging, but pop-culture historic, shopping center.

Demolition got underway in March 1998 and continued into June 1999. Only the Hochschild-Kohn / Value City store was left standing. It was expanded by 28,700 square feet and incorporated into a 20 million dollar strip center.

Known as HARUNDALE PLAZA, the 218,000 square foot complex was anchored by the aforementioned Value City. Framingham, Massachusetts-based A.J. Wright Family Apparel opened for business November 4, 1999 followed by a Woodlawn, Maryland-based Super Fresh Superstore, which began business in December 1999.

Value city was shuttered in early 2008 and soon re-opened as a Burlington Coat Factory. A.J. Wright closed, along with the entire chain, in February 2011. The HARUNDALE PLAZA store re-opened as HomeGoods (another TJX operation) in May 2011. The Super Fresh store shut down in July 2011. It was replaced by Regency Furniture on November 15, 2014.

Today, HARUNDALE PLAZA is owned and operated by Beachwood, Ohio-based Developers Diversified Realty, who acquired the facility in February 2007.

Sources:

Barbara S. and Jan B., past and present Maryland residents
"1,190,000 of Participations in Partnership Interests in Harundale Mall Associates" prospectus, February 18, 1960
"Hochschild-Kohn" article on Wikipedia
"Hutzler's" article on Wikipedia
www.cinematreasures.org
The Baltimore Sun
www.city-data.com / Baltimore Forum
www.ddr.com (Developers Diversified Realty)