Sears is closing its last Michigan department store at Westland Shopping Center
Sears is closing its department store at Westland Shopping Center, the storied retailer's last location in Michigan.
As first reported by hometownlife.com, the store on Warren Road had closing sale signs posted in the windows revealing the store’s demise. TransformCo, Sears' parent company, did not return messages seeking comment.
The closure is another blow for the troubled Midwest retailer that has shuttered hundreds of stores since 2017. Sears, once among the largest retailers in the world, didn’t change with the times, said Robert Gibbs, of the Gibbs Planning Group in Birmingham.
“It built the world’s tallest building in 1970,” he said. “It didn’t change, didn’t catch up with the Internet, computers. And Target, Walmart, Kohl’s, Mervyn’s took their customers. It was a great store up until 1975, but it just didn’t keep up with technology.”
Gibbs said that because of Westland Shopping Center's location and demographics that include young two-income households, it will have no trouble filling the space with new tenants.
"It will immediately reduce some traffic to the center, but it will present a really great opportunity for another anchor, department store or large retailer to move in there," he said. "The retailers are gravitating to the better properties like Westland."
Gibbs said it's likely that the store would be divided to accommodate more than one store as "mini anchors." Similar reuses were done with the former Sears locations at Macomb Mall and Oakland Mall. One tenant to occupy those spaces is home decor store, At Home.
Transformco purchased the assets of Sears Holdings after it filed Chapter 11 bankruptcy in October 2018. After the closure, according to the Sears web site, there are eight Sears Hometown stores in Michigan. Those stores are independently owned stores
There are four Sears appliance outlet stores, owned by American Freight, including locations in Livonia and Taylor.