The Moncton Bay store closes

The Bay in Moncton's Highfield Square closed its doors permanently Friday afternoon. The entire mall will be closed by the end of September.

Highfield Square mall to shut down by the end of the month

The Bay in Moncton's Highfield Square closed its doors permanently Friday afternoon. (CBC)

The Bay in Moncton's Highfield Square closed its doors permanently Friday afternoon. The entire mall will be closed by the end of September.

When Highfield Square opened its doors in 1969 it was a brand new concept: Moncton's first indoor shopping mall. But it eventually lost ground to Champlain Place and big box stores in the city's north end.

Louis Leger of the group Downtown Moncton remembered the mall's glory days. "For many years it was the mall in Moncton, so it's been a great — a wonderful — piece of our downtown and there's wonderful history with it," he said.

Leger said he's sad to see the mall go — but he's looking forward to the city's plan to build a new sports and entertainment centre on the property.

Greg Turner, who runs Colpitts Men's Wear on Main Street, is also excited by the possibility of a new centre. "People say in business you know when one door closes another door opens so we can't really…feel sad," Turner said.

"I think we have to look ahead and be proud and be excited [about the] opportunities that this is going to present to us here in the downtown Moncton core."

The city of Moncton has an option to buy the land but there is no firm funding in place to build the new centre.