Closing of Macy's St. Paul leaves big hole; opens new opportunity for downtown

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Macy's has announced that it is closing its store in downtown St. Paul by the end of March, MPR reports. With the closure of the retail outlet, St. Paul will have an entire city block to fill with new businesses. Asked for comment by MPR, Opus College of Business marketing professor Dave Brennan said that St. Paul lacks a critical mass of shoppers to support the store. By way of example, he noted that "only about 1 percent of the people in the total metropolitan area indicated that they would do some of their Christmas shopping in downtown St. Paul" in a holiday spending survey conducted by OCB faculty members.

While the news is a blow, St. Paul civic leaders are putting a positive spin on things, claiming that the impending vacancy of the Macy's building will create an opportunity to continue, as Mayor Chris Coleman puts it, the "success story of downtown St. Paul" - though perhaps with some major renovation to the large square building currently without windows.

Originally published: 01/03/2013, MPR News