"... Calvert Mall is operational ..."
Calvert Mall is a four-block shopping mall located on the boundary of the suburbs of Quarlesbank (the mall's northern half) and Gatcombeton (the mall's southern half). It is usually not populated by more than a hundred survivors at any one time.
In 1978, the Malton Mall Boom was in full swing. Six malls had already been built, a seventh was well underway, and plans for at least three others were in the works, planned for Dakerstown, Owsleybank, and Lerwill Heights. Which was all well and good, but construction on those couldn't begin until at least 1980, and that date was rushing farther and farther away as the northwest lost more and more money to the growing boom down south and east. If it continued, the northwest would never get any malls, and the urban decay they had been witnessing lately would accelerate rapidly.
Two suburbs- Quarlesbank and Gatcombeton- fully recognized the implications of this. Each had been pursuing their own ends to get a mall for themselves, but as the year progressed and money continued to drop off that became completely impossible. The suburban councils knocked heads, and eventually came up with the idea of pooling their money and building a mall on the border for both of them to profit from. The bill was pushed through, and on July 3rd, 1978, in the middle of the anniversary celebrations, a demo team from Zidowsky Construction and Demolition levelled a block of four old warehouses on the Quarlesbank-Gatcombeton border. After the rubble had settled, the council chairs from both suburbs walked to the center of the wreckage and, directly across from each other, dug the first shovelfuls of earth from the lot. The ground had been officially broken for the construction of Calvert Mall, named after a renowned sea captain who had come from the area.
Construction progressed apace after that- the foundation was dug and the concrete poured before the first snowflakes fell, and by March the first floor could be made out, blocked in by I-beams and concrete molds. But in early April the Energy Crisis hit Malton hard, and construction ground completely to a halt. The councils panicked- they had no more money to divert to the project, and every day without the mall there they lost more.
In desperation, the surrounding suburbs- Jensentown, Judgewood and Shuttlebank- all chipped in with a piece of their funding, and slowly the mall ground back into life, though construction progressed at a horribly slow pace. The rest of the year, the mall rose agonizingly against the low skylines, its art deco exterior reflecting the cold autumn light across the suburb.
Though it was sixteen below freezing on the day of completion (January 4th) with thirty-mph winds, the councils from all the participating suburbs and nearly half the combined population of Quarlesbank and Gatcombeton was there for the grand opening. Dressed in all the clothing they could muster, the crowd shivered as the council chairs spoke (quite abruptly) and cut the ribbon, allowing the people into the mall- which to their pleasant surprise was, despite half the city being without power due to the fuel shortage, lit up and warm. Yet this excitement was tinged with a sadness- it had taken a massive effort to get Calvert completed, and the fuel shortage still dragged on. There would be no new malls built for at least two years, and by then the novelty had worn off. The Mall Boom was over.
Next time you pass Calvert Mall, take note of the canvas contraptions on the roof. Though they may just look ornamental in fitting with the "age of sail" theme of the mall, those sails are connected in a saracen fashion to form windmills. These drive turbines deep below the mall (the shafts are hidden inside some of the pillars), meaning that although Calvert IS connected to the city power grid, in a pinch it can provide itself enough power for half the lights and seventy degrees of heat. In the post-Outbreak era, though, many of the turbines have been sabotaged or have fallen into disrepair, so although the windmills may spin, there's no power coming through the wire.
The mall's art-deco exterior is meant to recall a sea in storm (though the effect has been rather heavily ruined post-Outbreak, as many segments have fallen off to reveal the red-brick construction beneath), and the motif continues into the structure- blue and white abound, with motifs and murals of ocean scenes and ships of sail everywhere. The mall's support pillars are dolled up to resemble ship's masts, the floor tiles are arranged in patterns that recall deck planking, and the stores all tend towards nautical themes. You can almost smell the sea air when you walk through the door, and every trip to the mall feels like an adventure in itself.
Coordinates: NW [25, 9], SW [25, 10], NE [26, 9], SE [26, 10]
Nearby NecroTech Buildings
The NecroTech Buildings within ten blocks of the mall, listed from nearest to farthest, are:
|The Milnerr Building||Quarlesbank||23, 03||2-3 W, 6-7 N|
|The Balchin Building||Quarlesbank||20, 03||5-6 W, 6,7 N|
|The Marfell Building||Shuttlebank||33, 15||7-8 E, 5-6 S|
|The Haslock Building||Quarlesbank||29, 01||3-4 W, 8-9 N|
|The Evett Building||Quarlesbank||27, 01||1-2 E, 8-9 N|
|The Frappell Building||Shuttlebank||30, 18||4-5 E, 8-9 S|
|The Ludlow Building||Judgewood||17, 16||8-9 W, 6-7 S|
|The Shears Building||Jensentown||16, 06||8-9 W, 3-4 N|
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