Business

Macy’s to close at Antioch mall almost 16 years after opening

Nearly 16 years after Macy’s opened a store at Antioch’s Somersville Towne Center, the company has announced it will close its doors there.

The announcement of the store closure comes only a few months after another of the mall’s longtime anchor tenants, Sears, shuttered. Victoria’s Secret is also expected to close in the mall as of Jan. 21.The only major anchor tenants remaining are Fallas, on the southern wing and 24-Hour Fitness on the far eastern wing of the shopping center.

The Antioch Macy’s location is the only California one on a list of more than two dozen in several states that will be closed amid declining sales. Macy’s most recent earnings report, showed a sales decline of 3.9% at stores open for at least a year.

Macy’s CEO Jeff Gennette said the lower sales were “steeper than we expected.” He told CNN that warm weather, fewer tourists shopping in stores and problems at lower-tier malls. Shares of Macy’s have lost roughly 40% over the past year.

A full list of closures is expect at Macy’s upcoming investor day on Feb. 5. No exact closure date was confirmed for the Antioch location though mall officials said it would likely be in March or April.

Lena O’Neal was one of many shoppers on Wednesday surprised to hear about the closure. The Oakley resident, who had just purchased luggage, said she shops there often for clothes, perfumes, jewelry and gifts.

“I love this place; I hate that they are going to close it,” O’Neal said. “I don’t know how they can say the economy is doing well when all the stores are closing down.”

Emilia Rubio of Pittsburg was also surprised to learn the store would be closed. She said she shops frequently there for clothes for herself and her children.

Harjeet Kaur manages Eyebrow Art next to Macy’s and acknowledged that the the store would see less foot traffic when Macy’s closes in spring.

“I really like it there,” she said, noting she shops Macy’s for clothes and perfumes.

Macy’s opened at the Antioch mall in July of 2004, replacing JCPenney, which had anchored the northeastern wing of the shopping center, and later moved to Southeast Antioch.

Although at 107,142 square feet, it was about half the size of other Macy’s stores, it was hailed as an option for upscale fashion previously unavailable in the area. Until then, East County shoppers with disposable income had to travel to Concord’s Sunvalley Shopping Center or beyond for designer clothes.

The mall underwent a $6 million facelift in 2003, replacing the parquet floor with tiles, adding restrooms and new paint. Millions more went into building the two-story Macy’s structure.

In 2014 Time Equities Inc. purchased the then-48-year-old shopping mall from Macerich Co. for $12.3 million, later upgrading the interior and exterior.

Despite the loss of Macy’s, Shannon Skinner, the mall’s specialty leasing rep/marketing manager, said one new smaller tenant is coming to thr mall soon, a boutique clothing store called The Red Carpet. In addition, Guzman’s Gymnastics recently located to the mall, and Beat the Streets is moving to a large location there on Feb. 1.

“They’re all fabulous,” she said of the tenants. “I know it’s sad to see national tenants go, but we still have some amazing people here.”

Richard Madrigal

With a knack for storytelling, Richard started working at Feed Voice about a year ago. Covering substantial topics under the Business and World sections, he helps information seep in deeper with creative writing and content management skills.
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