CROSSROADS MALL
Williamson Road Northwest / US 11 and Hershberger Road Northwest
Roanoke County (Roanoke City), Virginia

The first interior mall in The Old Dominion was also the first major shopping complex developed by Salem, Virginia's Double T Corporation (which was headed by Thomas "T.D." Steele and T.A. Carter, Junior). The complex was situated on 36 acres, formerly a dairy farm, located 3 miles north of the center city.

Construction commenced in May 1960, with CROSSROADS MALL being dedicated July 27, 1961. The center was originally in unincorporated Roanoke County, but was annexed into the Independent City of Roanoke in 1976.

Encompassing approximately 310,000 leasable square feet and twenty-two stores and services, the 2-level CROSSROADS MALL was anchored by a 1-level (33,700 square foot), Henderson, North Carolina-based P.H. Rose variety store and 2-level (50,000 square foot) J.C. Penney.

Charter tenants included Fink's Jewelers, Smartwear Irving-Saks, Pete's Deli, Hoffmeir's, Lazarus ladies' wear, Peoples Drug and Kroger and Winn-Dixie supermarkets. The center's Bailey's Cafeteria was situated on its upper level, which overlooked the Tropical Garden court.

An expansion was completed in the mid-1960s. A 1-level (115,000 square foot) Woolco, added as an upper level anchor, opened September 28, 1966. The existing Penney's was enlarged, into an (88,000 square foot) "New Look" location, with a freestanding Auto Center.

Plitt Theatres built the single-screen Crossroads Cinema as a northeast parking area outparcel. The venue held its grand opening April 25, 1967. Roanoke-based S. H. Heironimous renovated a 2-level (25,000 square foot) space and opened a CROSSROADS MALL store May 8, 1967. The shopping hub now encompassed approximately 475,000 leasable square feet.

In the early 1970s, a freestanding (54,000 square foot) Kroger supermarket and SupeRx Drugs were added at the west end of the mall site, with the in-mall Kroger being shuttered. The first regional-class competitor came along in 1973. TANGLEWOOD MALL {5.9 miles south, in Roanoke County} was also developed by the Steele organization.

The Prudential Insurance Company acquired the CROSSROADS property in 1979. A 2 million dollar facelift was performed and the complex renamed CROSSROADS CONSUMER MALL. The year 1985 brought a more formidable rival. VALLEY VIEW MALL {.7 mile southwest, in Roanoke City} enveloped 800,000 leasable square feet.

Meanwhile, in January 1983, Woolco at CROSSROADS CONSUMER MALL closed. Kmart set up shop in 88,000 square feet of the vacant store. The remainder became an extended upper level mallway and additional inline stores. A Food Court was installed there in 1986. Winn-Dixie had abandoned their CROSSROADS MALL spot in 1981. Roses followed suit in 1984. J.C. Penney pulled out in 1985 and Heironomus moved on in 1990.

A new Dallas-based owner had come on board in February 1988. They did an interior renovation and signed two new tenants; Myrtle Beach-based Waccamaw's HomePlace and Richmond, Virginia-based Circuit City. The new marketing effort was not entirely successful and the center struggled to keep tenants. In April 1991, it was deeded back to the lender.

Pennsylvania-based Zamias Services acquired the property in October 1991 and performed another renovation. The CONSUMER part of the mall's name was dropped and the complex remade into a big box-based shopping center with the larger leasees given exterior entries. Knoxville's Goody's Family Clothing opened a (23,300 square foot) upper level store August 6, 1993. Jo-Ann Fabrics retenanted the old Roses.

By May 2001, the mall's proprietor was going through bankruptcy. A Mobile, Alabama-based company took the helm. Kroger had closed in June 1994 and was eventually replaced by Birmingham-based Books-A-Million. Waccamaw's HomePlace was shuttered in June 2001, with Circuit City shutting down in 2004.

New tenants were signed to take some of the vacant spaces. Advance Auto Parts leased the 60,000 square foot Waccamaw's spot in August 2001 and remade it into offices. Dollar Duz It opened a retail store November 7, 2001.

Another attempt at reinventing CROSSROADS MALL was announced in January 2006. 4 million dollars was spent separating 175,000 square feet of retail from 300,000 square feet of offices. The office segment, renamed CROSSROADS CORPORATE BUSINESS CENTER, was comprised mainly of a newly-created corporate headquarters for Advance Auto Parts, who assumed the space vacated by Circuit City and now occupied 102,500 square feet of the complex.

Ownership of CROSSROADS MALL / CORPORATE BUSINESS CENTER changed hands in March 2009. The new owner, a New York City-based entity known as Crossroads Investors, completed the conversion of the retail mall into an office complex. Dollar Duz It moved out in 2007, followed by Jo-Ann Fabrics, in early 2011.

The entire Lower Level of the complex, encompassing 246,000 square feet, was now occupied by the Advance Auto Parts headquarters. The Upper Level had State of Virginia offices (in the old Goody's space).

Big Kmart was now the only retail tenant still in operation in the old mall proper. The complex, excluding Kmart, was now officially known as CROSSROADS CORPORATE BUSINESS PARK. Kmart, and the retail structure west of it, would be known collectively as CROSSROADS CENTER.

In January 2015, it was announced that German discount grocer Aldi would open a (21,000 square foot) location in CROSSROADS SHOPPING CENTER. The store structure west of Kmart, which recently housed Rugged Wearhouse and Books-A-Million, was partially demolished and replaced with new construction. The new Aldi store opened in November 2015.

Sources:

www.mallmemories.com / Doug Force
http://stevenswain.blogspot.com / Steven Swain
http://www.flickr.com/photos/joearchitect/635346146
www.roanoke.com
Roanoke County, Virginia property tax assessor website