Bluecollarbear (bluecollarbear) wrote,

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2008. Plaza closed :(

Midtown Plaza closed last Friday. It is being torn down to make way for the glorious new Rochester,NY World Headquarters of the Paetec Company.I remember it with mixed emotions...
Christmas in Rochester was not complete without a trip to Midtown in the early 70's when I was a child. If you have ever watched "A Christmas Story" then you can picture the setup for the Santa Clause Mountian at Midtown. You would wait in this long line that switch backed up to Santa on his Throne. Santa asked what you wanted for Christmas. The "elves" would take your picture and send you on your way... So we didn't have a slide like Ralphie... But we did have a Monorail! It was like getting a carnival ride in the middle of winter. It was fun to ride in the tiny cars dangling from the rail...It was Magical...
I remember watching, from the second level balcony, my older brother perform a dance with his class, to the song "Downtown" by Petula Clark, in the middle of the mall floor next to The Clock of Nations.
I spent many hours of my teenage years hanging out(skipping school) inside the mall shopping at Record Theater, Radio Shack, The Source, Foot Locker, etc. and walking the Sky Way down to the South Ave. garage to get to Don's Arcade...
When I was in my early twenties, I worked for Sunny Vending Co. and 95% of my entire account route was inside the Inner Loop. Midtown tower was home to three of my accounts(including the Trailways bus station). Getting good parking in the delivery entrance was a royal pain in the ass...and I vaguely remember the freight elevator kind of sucked...Worked that job for 5 years...
So I suggest to anyone who wants Rochester's downtown to improve and prosper... Be sad for the passing of a national landmark(it was the first indoor mall in the country), but be glad for the new business and image that this project will bring to our city. If only we could get an IKEA downtown...we could be a Real Destination point.

p.s. The Clock of Nations is going to be saved... It is going to be on display at the Greater Rochester International Airport untill it can be brought to The Gallisano Childrens Hospital. I think that the Strong National Museum of Play would have also been a good permanent home for it, but the hospital is a great choice too.
Tags: christmas, downtown, midtown plaza, monorail

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