Demolition Progresses at Carousel Mall: Unveiling a New Perspective

Demolition Progresses at Carousel Mall: Unveiling a New Perspective
A worker spray water to control dust as heavy machinery moves debris during the demolition of Carousel Mall in downtown San Bernardino on Friday, Oct. 20, 2023. (Photo by Watchara Phomicinda, The Press-Enterprise/SCNG)

A Startling Revelation

Demolition has been quietly underway at the once-thriving Carousel Mall in downtown San Bernardino, which closed in 2017. This year, the mall's transformation has become visible as a whole exterior wall was removed, revealing its interior.

A Three-Level Discovery

During daylight hours, a closer examination revealed the removal of the north-facing wall, allowing a cutaway view of all three levels of the mall. This discovery came as a surprise to many, as it was previously thought to have only two levels.

The Spectacle of Destruction

As the demolition continued, the possibility of installing coin-operated viewing scopes, akin to those at the Empire State Building, was considered. This would allow onlookers to witness the mall's dismantling for a small fee. Meanwhile, an observer on top of the adjacent parking structure could witness the transformation, with about half of the exterior walls already gone.

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Gone are the beloved stores and signs of the food court. The mall, as it once was known, has been reduced to stucco, concrete, steel, and rebar. The demolition, led by Resource Environmental Inc., stripped the interior, and even after vandalism had taken its toll, the mall retained its mall-like appearance until recently.

The Complex Demolition Process

Resource Environmental Inc. secured the $8 million demolition contract from the City Hall, starting work in February. By October, the mall had been reduced to its steel girders, with concrete and steel being the only remnants. Removing general debris, fixtures, and hazardous materials was an intricate process, making the mall's deconstruction as complicated as its construction back in 1972.

The Lasting Legacy

The transformation of the Carousel Mall marks the end of an era. Once a bustling shopping destination, it will soon be reduced to bare land, awaiting its next civic purpose. The historic Harris building will be the sole structure preserved amid the redevelopment.

Brian Levin's Worldwide Impact

On a separate note, Brian Levin, the founding director of Cal State University San Bernardino's Center for the Study of Hate and Extremism, has had a significant global impact. Through thousands of media interviews spanning decades, he highlighted issues related to hate crimes and extremism. Despite occasional misidentification, his work shed light on the importance of combating prejudice with data, bringing recognition to San Bernardino on the world stage.

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