Retail News: What’s in the plans for West Oaks after nearly 40 years?

Update: West Oaks Mall Management contacted HHR with the following statement: Anchors, including Dillards, The Outlet, Fortis College, and Crazy Boss, remain open. In addition, there are inline retailers and restaurants that remain open. These stores have active leases and customers, and access to these stores and restaurants is not restricted. Any questions regarding this mall should be directed to [email protected]

Earlier this week, West Oaks Mall shut down interior access to their few remaining tenants. (See statement above for updated information) The first report of the closure (again see statement above) came Wednesday from Je at The Louisiana and Texas Retail Blogspot. These stores are being granted access through the former Macy’s. Issues with automatic doors had already permanently sealed off corridors in a facility needing maintenance. Despite the mall’s interior needing renovations, the property still drives traffic. Three anchor stores are still in operation as of this article and generate the majority of the traffic.

The Outlet is a deep-discount department store in the former Macy’s/Foleys. The Outlet sells overstock merchandise and new formal gowns. Crazy Boss, an apparel-focused discounter, replaced the former Palais Royal. This store shut their interior access around when Champ’s left the mall—finally, the Dillard’s Clearance Center, which does the most business. Dillard’s shut their mall access as part of becoming a Clearance Center. The glass doors along the mall entrance were frosted over within the past year. No redevelopment plans have been announced for the property. However, it is not impossible to guess there are likely plans to demolish the mall structure eventually. The parcel, which makes up the land between Westheimer, Highway 6, and Richmond Ave., is owned by a patchwork of owners. The majority of the mall, including all of the structures except for Dillards, is Mehta Investments, owner of the mall. Dillard’s owns their own property, Macy’s still owns the corner closest to Highway 6 and Westheimer, and various companies and individuals own most parcels along the road frontages. Past proposals for redevelopment included building a Lifestyle Center addition to the property. Although, this was never completed beyond constructing a movie theater that closed last year.

If the mall is demolished, it will open up a good amount of space for redevelopment in an area where growth has been recovering lately. While growth has returned to this intersection, the demographics have significantly changed, even in the last few years. The West Oaks area of Houston has long been considered a working-class suburb, although, within the past few years, the area has seen a dramatic increase in recent arrivals to both Houston and the country. It is possible that a portion of the land may be redeveloped for housing, similar to the project currently going on at Greenspoint Mall to help support the surge in population. The closing of West Oaks leaves only previously mentioned Greenspoint and Marcoplaza (formerly known as Pasadena Town Square) on the list of endangered malls in Houston. To see some photos of West Oaks, click here.


  1. Interesting response by the mall’s management, I didn’t even realize they had any restaurants left inside. Even if they say that the mall is open, the interior portion is more or less unofficially closed with limited access and less than 5 inline tenants. It’s a shame that it’s in the state that it’s in, but it doesn’t make sense to keep the interior of the mall open.

  2. I remember West Oaks Mall in its heyday-mid to late 90s. I used to shop at Sears, Dillard’s, Foley’s and all the smaller stores. The mall was always crowded and the deals were great. I loved the layout of the mall…felt like upscale.

  3. This reporting is incorrect. West Oaks Mall in Houston remains open. This story needs to be removed/corrected. Please visit Dillards, the Outlet, Fortis College, Crazy Boss or other retailers

    1. Hi, I’ll be happy to amend the article. Could you please let me know when the interior is open, and which entrance customers should use?

    2. Why was the only remaining interior entrance locked during business hours? Why were we denied access to the mall by Outlet employees stating there are no more stores left in the mall?

  4. It’s a sad thing to see as I grew up going to West Oaks. I expect housing focused redevelopment will serve the site well… though it may take a few years to get going as the Houston region is starting to be overbuilt with new apartments and will need to absorb tens of thousands of planned and under construction units that are not projected to be in immediate demand.

    A/C issues have plagued even healthy malls in recent years. Both Katy Mills and Memorial City have had issues (or have turned up the temperature to save money and wear on their units during peak usage times).

  5. I went to West Oaks Mall many times over the years. Most of my visits were in the 1990s and very early 2000s when the mall was a solidly middle-class mall, but I remember the earlier upscale mall era and the later dead mall era. The last few years were a real shame. Unlike Macroplaza Mall, which has a dated interior, or Greenspoint Mall, which has been in physical disrepair since Hurricane Ike at least, West Oaks mall still felt nice until recently from a physical perspective. The anchors were a different story. Macy’s did not maintain their store well and things have only gotten worse since they left. Towards the end, the A/C at the Sears wasn’t working very well. It sounds like maybe the A/C wasn’t working at the mall at all at the very end so that might have been the final blow given that it is now starting to get very hot outside.

    The closure of the mall is hardly a surprise to anyone who has been following this mall over the last few months. The only question was which mall closes first, West Oaks or Macroplaza. Well, we know the answer now.