Tuesday, March 22, 2005
former Montgomery Ward, Carolina Circle Mall, Greensboro, North Carolina, showing the upper level entrances facing US 29.
former Montgomery Ward, Carolina Circle Mall, Greensboro, North Carolina, showing the upper level side entrances.
former Montgomery Ward, Carolina Circle Mall, Greensboro, North Carolina, showing the lower level loading docks and garden center.
former Montgomery Ward, Carolina Circle Mall, Greensboro, North Carolina, showing the freestanding auto center across the street from the mall.
Montgomery Ward at Carolina Circle Mall in Greensboro, North Carolina opened in 1976 and was unequaled in its architectural outlandishness.
The new suburban store, relocated from a more sedate downtown location, featured angled concrete berms originally covered in brightly colored ceramic tile on the exterior of its upper level. Its multiple entrances angled skyward with soaring transoms over the doors with round keyholes cut into concrete fascias on three of the entries.
Not content to play it subtle inside, Montgomery Ward's Greensboro store single-handedly wins the award for worst interior design. Wards tried every bad ‘70s decorating fad they could from avocado and gold shag carpeting to a ‘conversation pit’ style stereo department. As the mall around it began to fail, almost nothing was updated at Wards, leaving the store oversized and trapped in a serious time warp.
By the early 1990s, the store began to downsize its selling space and reconfigure its departments, resulting in a low-cost remodel that never truly erased its former '70s self. By 1997, citing security and climate control concerns, Montgomery Ward closed off most of its exterior entrances and eventually its mall entrance, which led to the mall owners closing off the interior of the mall, which by then only contained a handful of stores.
Still, even as the mall it was attached to faded into obscurity, only the 2001 closing of the entire Montgomery Ward chain could kill this store, wich maintained decent sales and a loyal customer base until the end.