It was big news when the Gadsden Mall opened its doors on July 31, 1974. There were a lot of stores in downtown Gadsden, but it was the first mall — with all the businesses under one roof — in Etowah County.
Now, more than 40 years later, with shopping opportunities continuing to expand in the Gadsden area, shoppers still come from surrounding counties to shop at the Gadsden Mall.
Shoppers can spend a day in Gadsden, going from the mall to Coosa Town Center and the city's newest development, River Trace Shopping Center, where they can hit stores like TJ Maxx, Ross, Ulta, Shoe Carnival and Gander Mountain.
They can find stores in between like Academy Sports, which city officials believe gets more than 40 percent of its sales from shoppers who live outside Etowah County.
The majority of storefronts in downtown Gadsden are filled, and most of those are independent, locally owned businesses. Several local restaurants are located downtown and a growing number of national chains are choosing Gadsden.
Click here to view the full article by Lisa Savage with the Gadsden Times.