Roof collapses at new shopping mall

1,000 square metre section of roof caves in two days after new retail centre opens near Mont-de-Marsan

8 May 2014

THE ROOF of a new shopping mall on the outskirts of Mont-de-Marsan collapsed overnight - two days after it opened.

A large section of the roof in the western part of the main shopping centre at the 80,000 square metre Grand Moun mall at Saint-Pierre-du-Mont caved in between 2am and 2.30am last night.

The 80,000 square metre Grand Moun mall, which boasts 85 stores and a Leclerc hypermarket, only opened on Wednesday.

No one was injured, but that part of the mall, which houses the Leclerc hypermarket, will be closed to the public, along with the main gallery.

A number of events had been planned today and tomorrow to mark the mall’s opening.

Although the main gallery will be closed at least over the weekend while experts make sure the rest of the roof is safe, other areas of the mall will remain open.

"The only relief is that it is only material,” said Leclerc’s director Bernard Bornancin.

“Nobody was injured and ultimately, the impact will be economic. But we will do everything to understand what happened and be able to reopen as soon as possible."

The newly elected mayor of Saint-Pierre-du-Mont, Joel Bonnet, visited the scene thie morning to offer “moral and logistical support’ in the wake of what he called “a catastrophe”.

France 3 / screengrab

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