Why are shopping malls dying

Eerie shots show a trend from the USA that threatens Germany as well

They were once called the “cathedrals of consumption”: In Germany there are hundreds of shopping centers close to the city, which attract millions of German citizens every day. Fashion stores, restaurants, cinemas, hairdressers, fitness centers and indoor playgrounds - customers have everything they need under one roof. At least that is the promise of most shopping mall operators.

So it's no wonder that numerous shopping centers are well filled even during the week. But that could soon come to an end.

Because of all places in the motherland of XXL shopping centers, the USA, the malls are slowly dying out. And the shopping malls, which can barely survive, are still seeing a dramatic decline in visitor numbers. The reason could be online trading. Perhaps US citizens are fed up with rushing through clinically clean temples of consumption without having seen the sun even once.

The result: The number of empty shopping malls in the USA is increasing - and the dusty monuments of consumption are attracting more and more artists, who are fascinated by the ghostly atmosphere of the ruins. The American Dan Bell is one of them. For his impressive YouTube series “Dead Mall Series” he filmed countless abandoned shopping centers from the inside.

Anyone who cannot imagine that life pulsed in the midst of these ruins just a few years ago will receive the proof right away. Bell keeps showing excerpts of what it looked like in better times - Justin Bieber concerts, dance groups, sales promotions and, above all, one thing: crowds.

Eerie shots show a trend from the USA that threatens Germany as well

Eerie shots show a trend from the US that threatens Germany too

More from the net

  • The shops in the large shopping malls have had a hard time since online shopping was introduced.

    External content not available

    Your privacy settings prevent the loading and display of all external content (e.g. graphics or tables) and social networks (e.g. YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram etc.). To display, please activate the settings for social networks and external content in the privacy Settings.

    Screenshot YouTube / This is Dan Bell.

  • Here, where once families could spend several hours with their children, there is now only an eerie silence.

    External content not available

    Your privacy settings prevent the loading and display of all external content (e.g. graphics or tables) and social networks (e.g. YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram etc.). To display, please activate the settings for social networks and external content in the privacy Settings.

    Screenshot YouTube / This is Dan Bell.

  • The few shops that exist in extinct malls are about to end.

    External content not available

    Your privacy settings prevent the loading and display of all external content (e.g. graphics or tables) and social networks (e.g. YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram etc.). To display, please activate the settings for social networks and external content in the privacy Settings.

    Screenshot YouTube / This is Dan Bell.

  • Even if the shelves of some shops are still full - there are often hardly any customers left.

    External content not available

    Your privacy settings prevent the loading and display of all external content (e.g. graphics or tables) and social networks (e.g. YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram etc.). To display, please activate the settings for social networks and external content in the privacy Settings.

    Screenshot YouTube / This is Dan Bell.

  • Empty shops in large shopping malls are not uncommon.

    External content not available

    Your privacy settings prevent the loading and display of all external content (e.g. graphics or tables) and social networks (e.g. YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram etc.). To display, please activate the settings for social networks and external content in the privacy Settings.

    Screenshot YouTube / This is Dan Bell.

  • Discounts are designed to attract the last few customers before the stores finally close.

    External content not available

    Your privacy settings prevent the loading and display of all external content (e.g. graphics or tables) and social networks (e.g. YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram etc.). To display, please activate the settings for social networks and external content in the privacy Settings.

    Screenshot YouTube / This is Dan Bell.

  • Even restaurants within shopping centers can only win over a few customers.

    External content not available

    Your privacy settings prevent the loading and display of all external content (e.g. graphics or tables) and social networks (e.g. YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram etc.). To display, please activate the settings for social networks and external content in the privacy Settings.

    Screenshot YouTube / This is Dan Bell.

  • One mall after another has to close in the US - the same could soon be imminent in German inner cities.

    External content not available

    Your privacy settings prevent the loading and display of all external content (e.g. graphics or tables) and social networks (e.g. YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram etc.). To display, please activate the settings for social networks and external content in the privacy Settings.

    Screenshot YouTube / This is Dan Bell.

  • Where once children had fun, the indoor playgrounds are now empty.

    External content not available

    Your privacy settings prevent the loading and display of all external content (e.g. graphics or tables) and social networks (e.g. YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram etc.). To display, please activate the settings for social networks and external content in the privacy Settings.

    Screenshot YouTube / This is Dan Bell.

  • Few people still spend their free time in shopping malls.

    External content not available

    Your privacy settings prevent the loading and display of all external content (e.g. graphics or tables) and social networks (e.g. YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram etc.). To display, please activate the settings for social networks and external content in the privacy Settings.

    Screenshot YouTube / This is Dan Bell.

  • Empty shops are evidence of a decline in customers.

    External content not available

    Your privacy settings prevent the loading and display of all external content (e.g. graphics or tables) and social networks (e.g. YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram etc.). To display, please activate the settings for social networks and external content in the privacy Settings.

    Screenshot YouTube / This is Dan Bell.

  • Decorative elements can no longer attract customers either.

    External content not available

    Your privacy settings prevent the loading and display of all external content (e.g. graphics or tables) and social networks (e.g. YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram etc.). To display, please activate the settings for social networks and external content in the privacy Settings.

    Screenshot YouTube / This is Dan Bell.

  • Even if the choice of shops is often still large, many US citizens now prefer to shop online.

    External content not available

    Your privacy settings prevent the loading and display of all external content (e.g. graphics or tables) and social networks (e.g. YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram etc.). To display, please activate the settings for social networks and external content in the privacy Settings.

    Screenshot YouTube / This is Dan Bell.

  • Without discounts, businesses would have no chance of winning over customers.

    External content not available

    Your privacy settings prevent the loading and display of all external content (e.g. graphics or tables) and social networks (e.g. YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram etc.). To display, please activate the settings for social networks and external content in the privacy Settings.

    Screenshot YouTube / This is Dan Bell.

  • In many US malls you can only see a few customers.

    External content not available

    Your privacy settings prevent the loading and display of all external content (e.g. graphics or tables) and social networks (e.g. YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram etc.). To display, please activate the settings for social networks and external content in the privacy Settings.

    Screenshot YouTube / This is Dan Bell.

  • Even play facilities for children no longer bring families into the shopping malls.

    External content not available

    Your privacy settings prevent the loading and display of all external content (e.g. graphics or tables) and social networks (e.g. YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram etc.). To display, please activate the settings for social networks and external content in the privacy Settings.

    Screenshot YouTube / This is Dan Bell.

  • More and more shopping centers are closing completely - and are being left to decay.

    External content not available

    Your privacy settings prevent the loading and display of all external content (e.g. graphics or tables) and social networks (e.g. YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram etc.). To display, please activate the settings for social networks and external content in the privacy Settings.

    Screenshot YouTube / This is Dan Bell.

  • Some of the vacant buildings can even be visited today. However, they do not look inviting.

    External content not available

    Your privacy settings prevent the loading and display of all external content (e.g. graphics or tables) and social networks (e.g. YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram etc.). To display, please activate the settings for social networks and external content in the privacy Settings.

    Screenshot YouTube / This is Dan Bell.

  • No, this is not a scene from a horror movie. You only see one of Dan Bell's photos from an abandoned shopping mall.

    External content not available

    Your privacy settings prevent the loading and display of all external content (e.g. graphics or tables) and social networks (e.g. YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram etc.). To display, please activate the settings for social networks and external content in the privacy Settings.

    Screenshot YouTube / This is Dan Bell.

  • A few years ago, crowds of people poured into the huge shopping malls every day.

    External content not available

    Your privacy settings prevent the loading and display of all external content (e.g. graphics or tables) and social networks (e.g. YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram etc.). To display, please activate the settings for social networks and external content in the privacy Settings.

    Screenshot YouTube / This is Dan Bell.

  • Today the temples of consumption are no longer attractive to most US citizens.

    External content not available

    Your privacy settings prevent the loading and display of all external content (e.g. graphics or tables) and social networks (e.g. YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram etc.). To display, please activate the settings for social networks and external content in the privacy Settings.

    Screenshot YouTube / This is Dan Bell.

  • What was once a changing room is now just a field of rubble.

    External content not available

    Your privacy settings prevent the loading and display of all external content (e.g. graphics or tables) and social networks (e.g. YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram etc.). To display, please activate the settings for social networks and external content in the privacy Settings.

    Screenshot YouTube / This is Dan Bell.

  • This mall has already seen its best days.

    External content not available

    Your privacy settings prevent the loading and display of all external content (e.g. graphics or tables) and social networks (e.g. YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram etc.). To display, please activate the settings for social networks and external content in the privacy Settings.

    Screenshot YouTube / This is Dan Bell.

  • The information stands in the malls are now often unoccupied. However, given the small number of visitors, they are not needed either.

    External content not available

    Your privacy settings prevent the loading and display of all external content (e.g. graphics or tables) and social networks (e.g. YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram etc.). To display, please activate the settings for social networks and external content in the privacy Settings.

    Screenshot YouTube / This is Dan Bell.

  • Even the amusement arcades with their colorful machines cannot hide the sadness of many shopping centers.

    External content not available

    Your privacy settings prevent the loading and display of all external content (e.g. graphics or tables) and social networks (e.g. YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram etc.). To display, please activate the settings for social networks and external content in the privacy Settings.

    Screenshot YouTube / This is Dan Bell.

  • If you can see customer flows, it is usually for one reason only: To get huge discounts when a shop is closed.

    External content not available

    Your privacy settings prevent the loading and display of all external content (e.g. graphics or tables) and social networks (e.g. YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram etc.). To display, please activate the settings for social networks and external content in the privacy Settings.

    Screenshot YouTube / This is Dan Bell.

  • There are no more cars to be seen in many parking lots.

    External content not available

    Your privacy settings prevent the loading and display of all external content (e.g. graphics or tables) and social networks (e.g. YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram etc.). To display, please activate the settings for social networks and external content in the privacy Settings.

    Screenshot YouTube / This is Dan Bell.

  • Empty tables: These restaurants don't look really inviting either.

    External content not available

    Your privacy settings prevent the loading and display of all external content (e.g. graphics or tables) and social networks (e.g. YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram etc.). To display, please activate the settings for social networks and external content in the privacy Settings.

    Screenshot YouTube / This is Dan Bell

  • The USA is the motherland of shopping malls. This makes these images all the more fascinating for many Americans, many of whom spent parts of their childhood and youth there.

    External content not available

    Your privacy settings prevent the loading and display of all external content (e.g. graphics or tables) and social networks (e.g. YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram etc.). To display, please activate the settings for social networks and external content in the privacy Settings.

    Screenshot YouTube / This is Dan Bell.

  • It remains to be seen whether a similar trend will overtake German shopping centers in a few years.

    External content not available

    Your privacy settings prevent the loading and display of all external content (e.g. graphics or tables) and social networks (e.g.Youtube, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram etc.) To display, please activate the settings for social networks and external content in the privacy settings.

    Screenshot YouTube / This is Dan Bell.

This article was published by Business Insider in April 2019. It has now been reviewed and updated.