WOODLAWN, Md. — The Security Square Mall was once a thriving part of the Woodlawn area, but now not so much.
However, the hope is all that will soon change.
On Tuesday, Baltimore County Executive Johnny Olszewski announced a plan to invest $20 million to revamp the mall.
Built in the 1970’s, Security Square Mall was a booming attraction. It was the go-to place for people in the area to buy almost anything, but now, residents say they have to leave their community to find a decent store.
"If I need to pick up something for my twins, there's no store currently here that is going to offer what I need for a set of 13-year-olds that's age appropriate," said Michelle Davis, Baltimore County resident.
County leaders are looking to change the perspective of residents. The mall will hopefully be revamped in a few years, for people to once again shop at high end stores and enjoy good food.
Before that, officials want to hear from residents.
"We think that there is room at the table for everyone, and I think having all the voices there we'll make this a more robust and successful process. We're excited for the businesses, the property owners, elected officials, but particularly the community," said County Executive Johnny Olszewski.
Although many people say it's great, some residents wonder why it took so long to involve the community in the planning process.
"We've all been talking and writing letters and contacting our public officials and pushing for change. So, it's good to see this change. But some of the things that have led up to it haven't involved us. So, we're hoping that going forward, we will be part of the Charrette Process, and we will be part of any conversations that go on as far as what businesses come here," said Baltimore County Resident, Kimberly Shorter.
"We need to be engaged and we should have an opportunity to have a seat at the table to understand what's going on. And to be able to address some of the things that we know are not present all the time, but we feel it because we live here," said Davis.