Sears at The Commons mall in Federal Way will close in early April.
Sears Holdings announced in a Jan. 4 media release that 64 Kmart stores and 39 Sears stores throughout the United States would close in early 2018 as the company continues to rightsize its store footprint.
“In the process, as previously announced, we will continue to close some unprofitable stores as we transform our business model so that our physical store footprint and our digital capabilities match the needs and preferences of our members,” according to the release.
The future of the 160,000-square-foot retail space occupied by Sears at The Commons has not yet been determined, said Jamas Gwilliam, vice president of development for Merlone Geier Partners, which owns the mall.
“We are in the process of evaluating a number of different options for the site,” Gwilliam said.
Merlone Geier purchased the 52-acre Commons property, excluding the 11.5-acre Sears parcel, last May. The company acquired the Sears parcel last July along with other Sears properties in the area, including one in Shoreline, which will also close this year.
The announcement of the Sears closures didn’t come as a total surprise, Gwilliam said.
“We weren’t certain when they were going to make the announcement that they were closing,” he said.
The closure is an opportunity to re-evaluate the retail needs of the community, Gwilliam said.
“The retail landscape has changed quite a bit,” he said. “We take that into account as we are looking at how we can maintain a viable investment in the property for the rest of our tenants at The Commons and for the community.”
Gwilliam did not know exactly when Sears opened in the mall but said it was in the early 1970s.
“Sears has served the community for a long period of time,” he said. “This an opportunity to look at the future and try and provide a meaningful asset for the city of Federal Way and for the region going forward.”
Associates at impacted Sears and Kmart stores were informed of the closures on Jan. 4. Eligible associates will receive severance and have the opportunity to apply for open positions at area Kmart or Sears stores, according to the release.
Liquidation sales will begin as early as Jan. 12 at closing stores.
For a complete list of closures, visit searsholdings.com/docs/010418-store-closing-list.pdf.