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East Towne Mall

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The mall opened for business October 14, 1971 with a small ribbon cutting ceremony, a year after West Towne Mall, on the west side of Madison. At the time it was constructed, East Towne was Madison's largest enclosed mall, and had four large anchor stores, Sears, J. C. Penney, H.C. Prange Co., and Gimbel's. Prange Way also took up a large section at the back of Pranges' space.[citation needed]

The mall was developed by Jacobs, Visconsi, and Jacobs Company of Cleveland, Ohio. Construction began September 18, 1970. Originally, the mall contained eight water pools and sunken lounge areas. Artists Clarence Van Duzer and Joseph McDonnell were commissioned to create art work for the mall. McDonnell created four sculptures, including a 3,000 pound metal yellow rhinoceros with red polka dots made of half-inch steel plates. Another was a 35'x22' chandelier-like work suspended above one of the entryways. The chandelier was multi-colored and according to McDonnell, was inspired by a game of pick-up sticks and designed to resemble "a galaxy of light" from outside the center. Van Duzen was responsible for the large central area with its 30-foot (9.1 m) ceiling and four contemporary pillars. In the center was a large three-level pool with waterfalls, a 15-foot (4.6 m) fountain, and flashing lights, all synchronized to music. The main entrance was flanked by sculpted stone blocks in relief with irregular shapes and sizes. All the water sculptures and sunken lounge areas were removed in the late 1980s and the main entrance was redesigned, with the addition of a food court.[citation needed]

The parking area was designed by Stone and Robinson Associates, Inc., originally 2,100,000 square feet (200,000 m2) with a capacity of 6,000 cars and an average, maximum car-to-store distance of 350 ft (110 m) As a result of expansion of the main facility and construction projects on its perimeter, the parking area has since been reduced in size to hold fewer than 5,000 cars.[citation needed]

East Towne Mall was constructed near the intersection of U.S. Route 151 and Interstate 90/94, but was virtually alone when built on over 80 acres (320,000 m2) of farmland. Now it rests in the center of a large retail area with a number of banks, restaurants and numerous chain big-box stores ranging from Best Buy and Shopko to The Home Depot and Menards.

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Details and Specs

Hours of Operation:
Mon10:00 AM9:00 PM
Tue10:00 AM9:00 PM
Wed10:00 AM9:00 PM
Thr10:00 AM9:00 PM
Fri10:00 AM9:00 PM
Sat10:00 AM9:00 PM
Sun11:00 AM6:00 PM
Notes: Department Store and Holiday hours may vary.


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