RALEIGH--It was quite a birthday party Thursday at Crabtree Valley Mall. The guest of honor? The mall itself which turned 40 this week.
"H & M was the first store built in the Carolinas, our Lego store was the first built so constantly giving our customers the first and the exclusive," said Crabtree Valley Mall Marketing Director Sandra Geist.
Just like the fashion trends from the 1970s, the mall has come a long way since it first arrived in the Triangle. Whether it's online shopping or a slow economy, Crabtree may be the biggest place to shop, but it's no longer the only game in town.
"10 years ago, two malls were built basically in our backyard. We definitely took a dip in sales at that time," said Geist.
One of those malls, Streets at Southpoint in Durham, is also celebrating an anniversary this year. Although it's only 10 years, the mall feels it has accomplished a lot in a short amount of time.
"Competition makes you stronger. It makes you better. I feel we're very competitive in the market. We're aware of everyone else in the market and we just work to be the best we can in the Triangle," said Streets at Southpoint Senior General Manager Patrick Anderson.
And shoppers are aware of what both malls can offer.
"Durham is a smaller community than Crabtree is, but I love Crabtree. Before 'Forever 21' opened here I always went there for that kind of stuff. So they have a lot of different options that you might not get at a smaller mall like Southpoint," said Durham resident Taylor Williams.
The two malls plan to serve the Triangle as long as they can.