Collins Road Northeast and 1st Avenue Northeast / US 151
Cedar Rapids, Iowa

In the mid-1950s, Des Moines' Younkers chain had aspirations of opening a store in downtown Cedar Rapids. However, this plan was thwarted by center city merchants who wanted to avoid competition from such a large, out-of-town department store.

Younkers joined with Sears & Roebuck and began to envisage a suburban shopping center for Cedar Rapids. Plans were officially announced in September 1956. By this time, Chicago's Bernard Greenbaum & Associates had come on board to oversee development of a Sears & Younkers-anchored retail facility.

Designed by Chicago's David Cheskin, LINDALE PLAZA would be built on a 40.8-acre plot, located 6.8 miles northeast of center city Cedar Rapids. Ground was broken for the open-air mall project in September 1959.  A preview opening was held on September 1, 1960, when eleven stores opened their doors. Among these were Seiferts ladies' wear, May's Drug, a 1-level (42,700 square foot), Cedar Rapids-based Killian's East and 2-level (40,700 square foot) S.S. Kresge 5 & 10. The shopping complex was officially dedicated, with twenty-three operational stores, on September 15, 1960. 

The grand opening celebration was attended by Iowa Governor Herschel C. Loveless (D), James J. Meaghan (Mayor of Cedar Rapids) and Sally Neville, "Miss Iowa 1960," with a ceremonial ribbon being cut. A 3-level (158,600 square foot) Younkers was dedicated as part of the festivities. Sears' 2-level (148,000 square foot) store opened for business on October 6th.

The shopping complex consisted of a main mall level, with a basement housing a small retail concourse and office spaces. Among twenty-nine charter LINDALE PLAZA stores were Craemer's College Clothes, The Record Shop, a (22,500 square foot) Eagle Food Center supermarket and (12,500 square foot) Bishop Buffet.

A single-screen motion picture venue, the ABC-TriStates Plaza Theatre, was built in the mall's south parking area. It opened its doors on July 30, 1967 and would be in business for 20 years.

During 1977, the mall's north central entrance lane was enclosed and configured as a Mini-Mall. Its tenants included Critchett Piano & Organ, Hansel Haus, The Smoker's Cove, Fanny Farmer Candies, Crazy Top Shop, The Country Cobbler and a Merle Norman Cosmetic Studio.

A mall-wide roofing renovation was announced in June 1978, with construction getting underway in July. During this 2 million dollar project, additional store spaces were installed in entry lanes and in the center of the main shopping concourse. New stores included Record Bar, Pearls of the Orient Gift Shop, Flowerama, The Athlete's Foot and Terra Art.

An eight-bay Food Court was built on both sides of the mall's Center Court area. Vendors included Diamond Dave's Taco Company, Orange Julius, Taters & Toppings and the Maid-Rite Shop, A small stage, and two reflecting pools, were also installed. Moreover, mall entrances were rebuilt, new landscaping planted and the parking lot resurfaced.

The old Lower Level concourse, and basement of a vacant S.S. Kresge, were rebuilt as Lindale Lane, a nine-store mall within a mall. The basement of Younkers was reconfigured as Lindale Square, which featured twenty store spaces. Younkers' now encompassed 2 levels and 105,600 square feet. By November 1980, all construction dust had settled. The revitalized shopping complex had been renamed LINDALE MALL. Its remodeling was completed soon after the official dedication of WESTDALE MALL {6.8 miles southwest, in Cedar Rapids}.

The first -and only- anchor rebranding at LINDALE MALL took place on October 7, 1981. Davenport-based Petersen Harned Von Maur (a.k.a. Petersen's) assumed the Killian's East space. The name of the retail chain was shortened to simply Von Maur in 1989.

LINDALE MALL was expanded in the mid-1990s. The first phase of the project, a multilevel parking garage, was completed in November 1996. Phase two, the 7-bay Terrace Food Court and North Wing, were officially dedicated April 25, 1997. With this 15 million dollar remodeling, the mall encompassed approximately 767,100 leasable square feet and housed ninety store spaces.

For its first 8 years, LINDALE PLAZA was owned and operated by a joint venture of Younker Brothers, Incorporated and the Northwestern Life Insurance Company. The complex was sold in October 1968, with the buyer being Des Moines' General Management Corporation (the precursor of General Growth Properties). A second sale, to the Equitable Life Assurance Society of the United States, closed in 1984.

A third sale was finalized in March 1998. The Indianapolis-based Simon Debartolo Group (today's Simon Property Group) entered into a joint venture with the Santa Monica-based Macerich Company. Twelve malls were acquired. These were located in Iowa, South Dakota, Colorado, Indiana, Pennsylvania, Florida and Virginia.

The Simon Property Group assumed management at six centers. Macerich took control of the other six, which included LINDALE. This joint venture was dissolved in January 2012, with Simon assuming full ownership of LINDALE MALL. Meanwhile, a face lift renovation of the interior had been completed in December 2003.

Simon created a spin-off Real Estate Investment Trust in May 2014. Known as the Washington Prime Group, it assumed ownership of forty-four of Simon's "Grade B" malls, including the LINDALE property. In early 2015, the newly-formed Washington Prime Group merged with Columbus, Ohio's Glimcher Realty Trust.

A renovation of the north-facing facade of LINDALE MALL got underway in 2013. A (29,300 square foot) Streetscape was added on the east and west sides of the existing Main Entrance. The Terrace Food Court was rebuilt with a new Chipotle Mexican Grill. This restaurant opened July 25, 2014. New US Cellular, Hurricane Grill & Wings and an (8,100 square foot) Cheddar's Scratch Kitchen were completed, with the latter serving its first meals on June 2, 2014.

Stores in a west end Streetscape were Carters Babies & Kids, OshKosh B'Gosh children's wear and a (6,987 square foot) Kirkland's home decor. The Kirkland's was dedicated September 28, 2016. A freestanding Jared The Galleria of Jewelry was built in the northeastern periphery of the mall. This store made its debut December 3, 2016.

Younkers, a charter LINDALE anchor, became a division of Pennsylvania's Bon Ton Stores conglomerate in 2006. As a result of the bankruptcy of Bon Ton Stores, all Younkers locations were shuttered in August 2018. The LINDALE Sears, also a charter 1960 tenant, had gone dark in July of the same year. 

A (20,000 square foot) Planet Fitness, installed in part of the vacant Sears, opened for business on November 5, 2021. In March 2023, the Washington Prime Group sold LINDALE MALL. Great Neck, New York's Kohan Retail Investment Group became its new proprietor.


The Gazette (Cedar Rapids, Iowa)
The Daily Reporter (Spencer, Iowa)
Cedar Rapids Public Library
Linn County, Iowa tax assessor website (Website on Internet Archive Wayback Machine)
"Lindale Mall" article on Wikipedia