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Greenbriar Palace

The suburban shopping mall is “property” built for the consumption and lifestyle of the American middle class. The design philosophy and operation of the shopping mall was created to maximize profits and economic benefits in the shortest amount of time. However, with changes in peoples’ lifestyles and the emergence of online shopping in the twenty first century, the traditional shopping mall has gone into decline. Although malls are dying commercial spaces, they are currently being used to attract people who were once overlooked or even rejected by them. Those who did not have the ability to spend but were active in every corner of shopping mall spaces: teenagers and youths. Shopping malls are one of the few safe recreational spaces in suburban communities for youth, who typically live far from thriving urban centers. Unfortunately, most shopping malls over the last century still believe that the activities of young people in the mall are reducing the revenue that the mall can generate. They are unable to provide spending that is proportional to the time they spend shopping. Much of the youth has been driven away from the malls. We question whether this approach of breaking up kid’s groups and restricting where they can go is justified? Instead, we claim that all malls in the US should encourage and support the social learning and leisure activities of the youth, especially for communities that lack safe public spaces for youth activities. By infusing new and dynamic programs, dead malls have been transformed into places for young people to learn, play, and socialize. The traditional sense of a mall built for capital interests will be transformed into a youth paradise.