On Friday the management of the Woodville Mall sent a notice to tenants that Wood County was seeking to close the mall because of safety concerns. The letter advised merchants to prepare to vacate their stores as soon as possible. On Monday officials from the Wood County Department of Environmental Health arrived at the mall to conduct an inspection. Several violations were noted, among them an inside temperature of 46 degrees, and numerous locations with evidence of roof and water damage.
Northwood City Attorney Brian Ballinger says the inspection will enable the local government to determine what the next course of action will be. "Leaking water, health concerns, numerous violations reported to the health department and an out of state owner who does not want to take care of the problem," Mr. Ballinger said.
Debbie Reynolds, co-owner of "The Gift Gallery" feels betrayed by mall ownership. "We don't know where we can go after this, we got a great deal on the rent, signed a 3 year lease with a five year extension, and it didn't even last one year," Ms. Reynolds said.
Another violation discovered by inspectors was inside the movie theater. The temperature was clocked at 38 degrees, there was water damage on the carpeting and there were missing tiles from the roof. A theater employee told WNWO that in recent months employees had not been paid on time and expressed doubt that employees would be getting their final check now that the mall's closure is imminent.