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Ashley Furniture to occupy anchor spot at West Park Mall
Ashley Furniture HomeStore is coming to Cape Girardeau’s West Park Mall, according to a mall spokeswoman.
Stacey Keating, speaking for CBL Properties, which owns West Park Mall, said in an email Monday the furniture store will occupy the 53,000-square-foot space that once housed Furniture Factory Liquidators.
Signs announcing the new store and seeking applications for employment have been posted on mall property near Macy’s, where the Ashley Furniture is slated to go.
A business-license application filed with the city lists an opening date for the store as Nov. 20, but Keating said the store is scheduled to open in 2018. Keating said an exact opening date has not been set.
Mayor Harry Rediger, whose background includes retail management in a mall atmosphere, said the new business will be a boon to the mall and the city.
“Of course, any new business in any location, be it the mall or just a storefront in midtown or downtown or anywhere, brings with it a positive economic energy,” he said. “Malls have fallen on hard times. While ours is still very viable, a new store such as that, bringing traffic to the mall not only will benefit our city with sales-tax money, but will benefit the mall by bringing foot traffic.
“That’s what malls survive on, foot traffic.”
The announcement of a new anchor store appears to bode well for the mall, whose businesses have been hurt in recent years as consumer trends shift more to online shopping.
The suite Ashley Furniture HomeStore will occupy housed Steve & Barry’s until 2008. Furniture Factory Liquidators closed at the end of May after three years in the suite.
The nearest Ashley Furniture HomeStores to Cape Girardeau are in Carbondale, Illinois, and Paducah, Kentucky, although Patrick Furniture in Cape Girardeau is listed on the company’s website as a retailer. The store in Jackson recently closed.
Ashley Furniture, founded in 1945, operates more than 600 HomeStore locations and 15 manufacturing and distribution facilities worldwide.
Michael W. Ochs Sr. of Perryville, Missouri, was listed as the owner on the Ashley HomeStore business-license application. Ochs also owns Ochs Auto Sales and Rent-A-Car in Jackson and Perryville, according to the document.
Attempts to reach Ochs at his business for more information were unsuccessful Monday.