The Kyova Mall opened in 1989 as the Cedar Knoll Galleria on the outskirts of Ashland, Kentucky. The mall opened in 1989 but floundered over the next two decades. It is nearly vacant today.
The Zamia Corporation opened the Cedar Knoll Galleria on November 8, 1989,12 9 opening only after the Ashland Town Center, which held its own ribbon cutting on October 19.12 Cedar Knoll was anchored by Sears, Stone & Thomas, Phar-Mor and K-Mart, with two planned department stores reserved in the rear. Other tenants included Rex TV and Appliances, Jone’s New York, Pollock’s Jewelry and a mix of other stores. The food court featured The White Mountain ice cream parlor, Luca’s Pizza, and later Pretzel’s-Plus. At its height, the mall boasted an occupancy of 69%. The only notable addition to the roster was The Italian Oven later next to K-Mart.
Between 2001 and 2003, the Meijer Corporation studied the possibility of locating at Cedar Knoll 11 and numerous architectural renderings were completed at a cost of $30,000 to $40,000 each. The Target Corporation was also interested in the mall as well, but the reluctance to give out tax incentives from the Boyd County government prevented the developments from taking place.11
In 2002, Phar-Mor closed all of their southern United States stores including the Cedar Knoll location. In addition, K-Mart also pulled out later in the year and was replaced by Artrip’s Market and a flea market in late 2004. While they were marginally successful in terms of the number of patrons and sales, it did not compliment the type of market that Zamia was hoping for. Shortly after, Zamia went bankrupt and its creditors sold the company at auction.9
Reyton Cedar Knoll LLC purchased Cedar Knoll from Zamias in 2004.11 The facility was soon rebranded as the Kyova Mall, taking cues from the state names of Kentucky, Ohio and West Virginia for the new title. A new roof was installed and major repairs to the concourse was completed. In June, discussions began about the construction of a new stadium-styled movie theater in the 40,000 square-foot department-store out-lot along the rear of the mall. Steve and Barry’s, a low-end clothing store, opened in November in the former K-Mart location.
Indiana-based Great Escape Theatres announced on May 11, 2006 that it would construct a state-of-the-art movie house on the site of the former Phar-Mor anchor by November 15.3 Work would include demolition of 11,000 square-feet of existing mall space and the construction of an enclosed atrium to give the theater an “indoor and outdoor feel.” Work began July 21 but Great Escape backed out of the deal just three days later. It gave development rights to Phoenix Theatres who had more experience with retrofitting existing structures into theaters. 3 4
In early 2007, Kyova Mall began a push for Boyd County to become moist with restrictions,6 although the intention to serve alcohol was planned as far back as 2004.11 The measure, which would allow certain restaurants to serve alcohol, was heavily pushed by the fledgling mall in an effort to boost business and bring in popular restaurants to the mall’s outlots. The attempt garnered nearly 6,000 signatures from registered voters on a petition which allowed it to go to vote. The measure to allow certain restaurants to serve alcohol passed by a 67% confidence on May 22;6 all but one precinct voted in favor as well.7 The law allowed restaurants that make at least 70% of their revenue from food sales and seat at least 100 people to serve liquor by the drink.7 11
Phoenix Theatres 10 opened to the public on May 18, featuring stadium-style seating, high-back rocking chair seats, digital surround sound and wall-to-wall screens, and other upgraded amenities.5
One of the remaining anchor tenants at the mall, Sears, announced in February 2014 that the Kyova location would close by May 11.13 The Auto Center closed only a few weeks later. As of July 2014, the remaining anchors include Elder-Beerman and Phoenix Theatres 10.
- K-Mart/Artrips Market/Flea Market
- Pollock’s Jewlery
- Arcade, Later Resolutions
- Coach House Gifts
- Kay-Bee Toys
- Lane Bryant
- Stars and Stripes
- Things Remembered
- The Italian Oven
- Rack Room Shoes
- Rex TV/Appliance
- Fashion Bug/Furniture Store
- Bingo Halls
- Dollar Tree
- Faith Christian Store
- Monfried Optical Superstore
- Lane Bryant
- KAY Jewler
- Name: Kyova Mall
- Location: Ashland, Kentucky
- Years of Significance: 1989
- Status: Active
- Cahal, Sherman. Personal references.
- Huntington News Article
- Fields, Ben. “Work under way for new theater at Kyova.” 24 July, 2006 Daily Independent (Ashland). May 24, 2007 Article.
- “PHOENIX THEATRES TO MANAGE NEW MULTI-PLEX THEATRE IN CANNONSBURG, KY.” Phoenix Theatres. Press release.
- “New Kentucky theater boasts 10 screens, stadium seating.” 17 May, 2007 Ironton Tribune. May 17, 2007 Article.
- Fields, Ben. “Landslide.” 23 May, 2007 Daily Independent (Ashland). May 24, 2007 Article.
- Fields, Ben. “All precincts but one vote ‘yes’.” May 23, 2007 Daily Independent (Ashland). 24 May, 2007 Article.
- Hart, Kenneth. “Kyova Mall theater to open Friday.” 13 May, 2007 Daily Independent (Ashland). 29 May, 2007 Article.
- Fields, Ben. “Mall bustles as theater opens.” 21 May, 2007 Daily Independent (Ashland). 29 May, 2007 Article.
Fields, Ben. “Shop makes excitement at Kyova.” 9 Feb., 2007 Daily Independent (Ashland). 29 May, 2007 Article.
- Fields, Ben. “Kyova’s Blair: ‘I needed a break’.” 2 April, 2007 Daily Independent (Ashland). 29 May, 2007 Article.
- “Dow Jones surges to high amid interest-rate optimism.” 4 Oct., 1989 Herald-Leader (Lexington). 29 May, 2007.
- “Sears Reportedly Closing KYOVA Mall Store.” WSAZ Newschannel 3. N.p., 10 Feb. 2014. Web. 25 July 2014. Article.