Could this be the end of an era in South Jersey? The owner of the Cherry Hill Mall has officially filed for bankruptcy. What does the future hold?

It's no secret that shopping malls all over the country are struggling to stay afloat. But to think of a future that could see the Cherry Hill Mall closing feels unfathomable.

The History of Cherry Hill Mall

The mall, built by The Rouse Company, opening in the Fall of 1961. It occupies more than a million square feet of space.

Once upon a time, Cherry Hill Mall, off Route 38, was home to department stores like Strawbridge & Clothier and Bamberger's and featured a Woolworth 5 & 10 and a Houlihan's restaurant. It also reportedly introduced one of the first shopping mall food courts on record.

In the present, Cherry Hill Mall has a Nordstrom department store location, as well as a Macy's, and attached restaurants like Seasons 52 and Bahama Breeze. It even has it's own parking garage.

Nordstrom at Cherry Hill Mall, Cherry Hill NJ
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Latest Development

But PREIT, the owner of not only the Cherry Hill Mall (since 2003) but also the Moorestown Mall, has reportedly filed for bankruptcy protection for a second time, according to

Cherry Hill Mall in New Jersey
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What Does Bankruptcy Protection Mean?

After failing to meet a recent deadline to pay back more than $1 billion in debt, a Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection petition means the malls can continue day-to-day operations while being restructured from a financial standpoint.

The petition also reduces PREIT's debt by roughly $200M but can no longer be public traded on the New York Stock Exchange.

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In a statement, PREIT CEO Joseph F. Coradino remarked, "We look forward to quickly emerging from this process as a financially stronger company with the resources and support to continue creating diverse, multi-use property experiences throughout our portfolio."

The Good News reports that all existing PREIT employees, suppliers and vendors will continue to receive a paycheck.

Neither Cherry Hill Mall or Moorestown Mall are in danger of closing, at least for the time being.

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