Fort Lauderdale finds structural issues at shopping center where ceiling fell

Crews working to reopen Fort Lauderdale strip mall where ceiling collapsed
Crews working to reopen Fort Lauderdale strip mall where ceiling collapsed

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. – The Southland Shopping Center on State Road 84 has been mostly closed until further notice after the ceiling in front of Bealls Outlet caved in and came crashing down Thursday.

Luckily, no one was hurt. But from that one incident came a flurry of other structural issues that the city of Fort Lauderdale found need to be addressed before the entire plaza can reopen.

Some of the overhang areas are unstable, so they are removing them all, starting at Winn-Dixie and working outward. That supermarket is expected to reopen to customers Friday evening.

“They’ve seen what looks like some water damage and possibly some termite damage as well,” said Mike Jachles, a spokesman for the city of Fort Lauderdale. “This structure is probably 50 or more years old, so over time, there is deterioration. ... And this is not something you can see with the naked eye.”

As of right now, there is no timetable for when the rest of the shopping center will reopen. Some of the businesses have been able to serve customers from the back of the building.

Fort Lauderdale shopping center where ceiling collapsed remains closed
Fort Lauderdale shopping center where ceiling collapsed remains closed

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