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Patrons, tenants: Mall not achieving its potential

He said he is unsure what will happen to the mall, or if any deal with a tenant, or tenants, will be struck soon, but "Key Point is excited about the opportunity," and are "looking to change the culture of what's here."

For now, shoppers scattered through the once hopping retail destination stroll casually past vacant storefronts until they land in one of the few remaining shops.

Mike Densmore, 21, of Watervliet and Laura Rahm, 19, of Latham, stopped at the mall to visit the lone hair salon there.

Densmore said he only comes to the mall for a haircut and the occasional stop at Burlington Coat Factory, which Rahm likes to patronize. Rahm said she was disappointed to see many of the shops closed, including a candy store that had reasonable prices on a number of treats.

Densmore said he no longer goes to the movie theater at the mall in favor for other locations, and would like to see a revitalized structure.

"Shut it down and make something new," Densmore said.

Eleanor Laviolette, a Troy resident of more than 30 years said she comes to the J.C. Penney because of its location and because of the sales it runs.

"I always liked this mall," she said. "It's close to the highway and has good parking."

Laviolette was making her way to Burlington Coat Factory on the other side of the mall, she said, to do a little more shopping after a stop at J.C. Penney's.

Tenants weighed in on the state of the mall, as well.

Gloria Turner, assistant manager at One Step Above, and hair stylist of 26 years, said a strong customer base has kept the salon busy, but walk-ins from mall traffic would be helpful too, if there were more of them.

Having done business at the mall for 21 years, Turner said she would like to see the shopping center renovated, but she was unsure of its future.

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