Community reacts to Chauncey Hill Mall demolition

The Chauncey Hill Mall is expected to be torn down and replaced with new development.

Posted: May 15, 2018 11:43 PM
Updated: May 16, 2018 4:40 AM

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (WLFI) — The Chauncey Hill Mall is expected to be torn down and replaced with new development. Chauncey Hill Mall businesses were notified Tuesday.

"I've worked at the Discount Den for a year," said Julia Bittner, a Purdue University student.

Bittner said Discount Den is more than just your one-stop shop. She says it's a staple at Purdue.

"The Discount Den has been here for like 30 years, and now they have to move," said Bittner. "There's people who come in here every single day and get a Den Pop."

At Discount Den, customers can get a classic Den Pop for only 65 cents, but they can also just come in and hang out. However, the classic spot now has an expiration date.

"Seeing that it's getting torn down is pretty upsetting because I've grown up with it," said Bittner.

On Tuesday, city leaders said everything from Taco Bell to Hotbox Pizza in the Chauncey Hill Mall will be torn down. They said a new development will replace it.

"It's a plus and a minus at the same time," said Ray Moses, a West Lafayette resident.

Some said tearing down the mall could help revive the area.

"You're going to have a lot of students, especially in prime real estate that are going to be right here," said Ramsey Bradke, a Purdue student.

"It would be sad for a little time while they're making something new here, but this place really needs a revive," said Kora Jensen, another student.

"I think something like groceries or a CVS would make a lot of sense," said Bradke.

However, others News 18 talked to are upset to hear iconic spots like Where Else and the Den will be torn down.

"This is where everybody comes to meet up, especially on the west side," said Moses. "There is a constant flow of people. They meet, they socialize, especially when the bars are closed."

Bittner said in this case, change isn't necessarily a good thing.

"Everyone has been going to those bars their entire career at Purdue. So, now that they're gone, where else are we going to go? What are we going to do? You're kind of taking away the normal for Purdue students," said Bittner.

Director of Development Erik Carlson said he spoke to businesses about the plans. City leaders hope that gives them a year to relocate.

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