Madison Bookstore 'Total Loss' After Flood

Sages Pages unsure if it will reopen.

Sages Pages was deemed a total loss after a water main break at the Madison Plaza shopping center. Credit: Sages Pages Facebook page
Sages Pages was deemed a total loss after a water main break at the Madison Plaza shopping center. Credit: Sages Pages Facebook page
Sages Pages bookstore was deemed a "total loss" by its insurance company after a water main break flooded the shop with inches of water, and owner Lillian Trujillo said this week she is not sure if she will be able to start the business again.

Everything inside had to be removed so the store could be torn down to the beams and treated for mold, Trujillo said. 

The water main break occurred Jan. 8 at the Madison Plaza shopping center.

Trujillo said she will be crunching numbers to see if she is able to reopen the business. If she does, she expects it will be at least four to six months before the store can reopen.

Sages Pages had up to 3 inches of water upstairs and downstairs across the full length of the store, she said. Photos of the aftermath and cleanup effort have been posted on the Sages Pages Facebook page.

CC January 25, 2014 at 07:55 AM
I thought regular insurance covers you if a pipe breaks...no?! The building should be covered by their owner's insurance? I do know if you are renting that space, you are liable for the contents, not the walls, floors, mold, carpet, etc... Perhaps others should comment if they know. This may help you out because "some" insurance companies do not tell you everything:)
DidUReallyJustSayThat January 25, 2014 at 10:19 AM
A "total loss," means that the insurance company is going to pay them from the loss of business, clean up and also give them full replacement value for everything - inventory, display cases, etc., which is way more than they would get if they tried to sell the store before it was flooded, or they could get if they completely rebuilt and restocked. It's a great way to get out of a business that is slowly getting crushed by Amazon and the internet.
CC January 25, 2014 at 10:30 AM
It's good for readers to have this explained. A LOT of people have no idea what their insurance policies mean (because they are usually NOT explained) until there is a LARGE claim. Thanks.
Noreen McManus January 25, 2014 at 12:47 PM
How can one even say, "It's a good time to get out of a business that is slowly getting crushed by Amazon and the internet?" Who puts businesses out of business? The consumerdoes. Lillian and her employees at Sages Pages have done so much for the consumer and local shoppers, not to mention being generous to the local community. Any time I have shopped at Sages Pages, I have felt that I was the most important customer in the world. No, I don't need stroking. I am quite an independent shopper. However, if Sages Pages didn't have what I wanted, they would order it. If they had never heard of a children's book or other book, they would listen and research it and then order it in multiple copies, so that others besides myself could enjoy the same book. I hope Sages Pages will be able to reopen. The community of Madison and outlying communities will be that much richer for it. Let's hear it for Lillian and Sages Pages. Thank you for all you have done. I know this is a difficult time. It must hurt to your very being with the recent flood and losses incurred. I am hopeful that you might be able to reopen. I will continue to shop at your store if you do. Please let us know how others and I can be of help. Noreen McManus
CC January 25, 2014 at 01:04 PM
I vote to reopen Sages Pages:)! My family (college students included) still enjoys paperback and hard cover books!
Elizabeth January 26, 2014 at 05:55 PM
It is very distressing to read the callous remark which suggests that this horrible accident was somehow planned. As we all know, insurance companies my use the term "total loss" but the definition of that term varies from insurance company to insurance company. I am so very sorry for the loss of this bright star in the Madison area community. The staff excel at customer service. I no longer live in NJ but when I am in the area, I always stop in. I hope the "numbers crunch" in favor of reopening Sages Pages. I will keep the owner and staff in my prayers that they are able to keep body and soul together until they are all back to work in a store that's back in business.
DidUReallyJustSayThat January 26, 2014 at 07:18 PM
Didn't suggest that it was planned, and any real financial analysis is devoid of emotion, like "callousness." The reality is that when they do the math they will probably find that financially, the decision to go out of business is the better choice.
CC January 26, 2014 at 08:51 PM
Lily Yee January 27, 2014 at 09:23 PM
I have to agree with Noreen. Lillian and her staff at Sages Pages go above and beyond excellent customer service. I have many times gone to Sages looking for a book and or gift that I could have easily have gotten on Amazon but instead supported a local independent. I have always felt welcomed in Lillian's shop and was NEVER ignored by anyone on her staff. I do not live in Madison but I go out of my way to shop at Sages. I understand the financial burdens that lay ahead but Sages Pages means more than just a book store to many people. I hope Lillian knows that there are people who support her and hope she returns. My prayers to Lillian and all her staff. I truly hope she considers reopening. It would be a tremendous loss for not just Madison but for many others.
Susan February 19, 2014 at 06:27 AM
Lets say its a total loss, and insurance is paid to the owner. Lets say she choses not to reopen. That is her choice, regardless of the reason behind it. The people I feel sorry for are her employees who are know our of a job and have worked there for many years.


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