I arrived at Dartmouth Mall at about 9:30 a.m. the other day, figuring I'd get some steps in before the stores opened at 10. It was much too cold and windy to walk outdoors, and I needed to find a new shirt for my vacation in a few weeks. I could buy a shirt and be at the office in time to prep for my radio show at noon.

JC Penney swung open its gate at 9:54 a.m., so I shopped there first. Then, I re-entered the mall to find most other stores had not opened yet. It was now 10:08.

I asked a security official why that was.

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"Eleven," he barked as he continued past me.

Eleven? Since when? That's a crazy time for a mall to open. How do you make money if you are closed?

Here's Why The Dartmouth Mall Changed Its Hours Of Operation
Barry Richard/Townsquare Media

H&M was open, as was Old Navy. Three Old Navy employees were busy straightening and stocking the store. They told me the new hours began in January. "We open early," one said. Burlington was also open, as was Macy's.

I asked a Macy's worker about the change in hours. He didn't know but seemed to agree with me that it makes shopping more inconvenient for people. "Write them a letter," he urged.

He explained that shopping patterns have shifted, and fewer shoppers come out in the evening, preferring to shop in the morning. The change makes it tough for many.

Here's Why The Dartmouth Mall Changed Its Hours Of Operation
Barry Richard/Townsquare Media

I spoke on site with mall General Manager Mike Alfonso, who directed me to Senior Marketing Director Beth Zager. Zager was out of the office for the day. I emailed her to ask about the change.

READ MORE: Macy's Decides Fate of Dartmouth Store as It Prepares for Closings

"The hours changed in January," Zager wrote. "The change in hours will allow our retailers to accommodate the needs of our shoppers more efficiently, including being able to provide proper staffing, additional time to update inventory, etc. We hope that these changes will enhance our shoppers' experience."

Here's Why The Dartmouth Mall Changed Its Hours Of Operation
Barry Richard/Townsquare Media

The statement continued, "Restaurant and department store hours may vary. We will continue to open early for the mall walkers."

In December 2023, mall owner Preit voluntarily filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection to restructure debt. The investment trust said there would be no interruption to service and it would likely emerge from bankruptcy in February 2024.

The new mall hours are 11 a.m. to 8 p.m., Monday-Saturday; and 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Sunday.

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