Syracuse, N.Y. — J.C. Penney said Thursday it will close its store at Destiny USA in Syracuse and six other locations in New York.
The stores are among 154 stores nationwide that the department store chain said it will close in its “first phase” of downsizing as part of its reorganization in bankruptcy court.
The retailer said it selected the stores following a “comprehensive evaluation of its retail footprint and a careful analysis of store performance and future strategic fit for the company.”
These are the other J.C. Penney stores in New York that will be closed:
- Finger Lakes Mall, 1579 Clark Street Road, Auburn
- Batavia City Centre, 40 Batavia City Ctr, Batavia
- Roseland Shopping Center, 3225 State Rt 364, Canandaigua
- Sangertown Square Mall, 1 Sangertown Square, New Hartford
- Oswego Plaza, 140 State Route 104, Oswego
- Freedom Mall, 205 Erie Blvd W., Rome
The company said it expects additional phases of store closings in the coming weeks as it reduces its store footprint and focuses on its strongest stores and its ecommerce flagship store, jcp.com.
Store closing sales for the first round of store closures are expected to take 10 to 16 weeks to complete.
“While closing stores is always an extremely difficult decision, our store optimization strategy is vital to ensuring we emerge from both Chapter 11 and the COVID-19 pandemic as a stronger retailer with greater financial flexibility to allow us to continue serving our loyal customers for decades to come,” said Jill Soltau, chief executive officer of J.C. Penney.
“I am incredibly grateful to our talented associates for their ongoing dedication and their passion for meeting and exceeding our customers’ expectations during this difficult and uncertain time. All impacted associates will be treated with the utmost consideration and respect.”
Even after the closings, J.C. Penney will remain one of the nation’s largest apparel and home retailers, Soltau said.
“As of June 4, 2020, we have reopened nearly 500 stores since government officials have eased COVID-19 restrictions and we look forward to opening more,” she said. “We are excited to welcome back our customers and associates at these locations, and we will continue to take actions to be best positioned to build on our over 100-year history.”
Penney filed for reorganization under Chapter 11 of U.S. Bankruptcy Code in U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of Texas on May 15. At the time, it operated 850 stores and had nearly 90,000 workers. It said that it received $900 million in financing to help it operate during the restructuring.
Its store at Destiny USA has been closed since March 18 by government order because of the pandemic. Its loss will be another blow to Destiny, the largest mall in New York and sixth largest in the nation.
Pyramid Management Group, with manages the mall, has urged Gov. Andrew Cuomo to allow the center to reopen under phase two of the state’s regional reopening plan. Cuomo last week ordered the interior portions of shopping malls to remain closed, except for curbside pickup service.
READ MORE: Destiny USA asks New York to reconsider ‘surprising’ decision to keep malls closed
Rick Moriarty covers business news and consumer issues. Got a tip, comment or story idea? Contact him anytime: Email | Twitter | Facebook | 315-470-3148