FORT WAYNE – A water main break at Glenbrook Square dampened floors and soaked carpets early Friday, forcing a number of stores to close while cleanup crews in rubber boots dealt with the problem.
The north-side mall announced the break on its Facebook page shortly after 6:30 a.m., saying that a few retailers would be opening later than usual. By Friday evening, though, many businesses on the east side of the mall had not opened.
Some businesses posted signs saying they would be closed for the weekend. LensCrafters, for instance, expected to be closed until 9:30 a.m. Monday. But in many cases, it was unclear when stores would re-open.
On Facebook, mall officials suggested that concerned shoppers call ahead to see whether a store is open. The stores' phone numbers are listed on the mall's website, www.glenbrooksquare.com.
At 7 p.m. Friday, the mall was busy with shoppers, and many stores were making sales. But the hallway on the east side was blocked off, and the drone of dozens of industrial-strength fans could be heard.
Don and Pat Huber, from Winona Lake, said they didn't mind the store closures, but the hallway shutdown caused them a minor inconvenience. "We just had to walk around," Pat Huber said.
Debra Rohr, 56, came from LaOtto to buy a gift for her granddaughter at Gymboree, but when she got there, the store was closed.
"It's not a big deal," she said. "I'll get something for her. It's just a matter of time."
The mall's east side, the area most affected by the water main break, was also the site of a small fire on the afternoon of Sept. 28. Sprinklers kept the blaze from spreading beyond a storage area, and the mall, which was evacuated, reopened several hours later. No injuries were reported.
On Friday, crews with hoses and pumps worked near the east entrance. A security guard said no mall officials were available to comment, and a phone message left with the management office Friday evening was not returned.