Jacob Biba’s first visit to a deserted mall was in 2001 – where he found a chocolate milkshake priced in accordance with a time long gone. Here he provides a glimpse of eerie storefronts and places that are dying – but not quite dead.
The first time I found myself in a deserted mall was in 200 – in Louisville Kentucky. I bought a chocolate milkshake for 90 cents from a donut shop in an otherwise empty mall from a little old lady behind her cash register.
I was 20 years old and really liked chocolate milkshakes – so I was pretty well aware that 90 cents was no longer the going rate for milkshakes – three dollars was more like it. A friend remarked: ‘Well – this is the mall that time forgot’.
A lot of towns have similar malls. Asheville – where I live has one. It’s called the Innsbruck mall. It has an escalator – fake trees and a rent-to-own furniture store – and not much else.