Marshalls may be narrowing its list of possible east-side sites for second store

WICHITA — It was late 2011 when Have You Heard? broke the news that Marshalls most likely would be coming to Wichita.

Since then, the Massachusetts-based discount retailer opened a Marshalls in the former Borders Books space at NewMarket Square at 21st and Maize Road.

A deal to open in Regency Lakes at 21st and Greenwich didn’t work out, but local T.J. Maxx employees are telling customers that Marshalls is still looking on the east side and has narrowed its decision to two or three sites.

Parent company TJX Cos. owns Marshalls and T.J. Maxx, which is in Eastgate Plaza at Kellogg and Rock and in the Westgate Market shopping center at Kellogg and Dugan.

It looked like TJX at one point also considered opening its HomeGoods concept in Wichita, but that no longer seems like an imminent possibility. At least not as much as an east-side Marshalls.

No one at TJX is sharing details on possible Marshalls sites yet, but we’ll keep you posted.

Despite sign to the contrary, T.J. Maxx isn’t coming to New Leaf Plaza

WICHITA — Shoppers in the 21st and Amidon area had brief hope that T.J. Maxx is coming to the intersection. A business in the area even had a sign saying so, but it’s not true.

“It speaks to a need or a demand at that intersection that’s probably not being fully fulfilled,” says Scott Harper, a broker with Landmark Commercial Real Estate.

“We have contacted them,” Harper says of T.J. Maxx. He was courting the store for New Leaf Plaza at the southwest corner where a Walmart Neighborhood Market is but says he “didn’t really get too far with it.”

Harper says that soft goods retailers such as T.J. Maxx like to cluster together.

“At the moment, that’s a little bit of a challenge for the intersection,” he says. Harper says it’s only one of a couple of intersections in the city with three grocers.

“I think soft goods are under served at the intersection,” he says. “A lot of them aren’t overly attracted to grocery-anchored centers.”

He says grocery stores are a draw for fitness centers.

“That’s why it’s good for Planet Fitness.”

The franchise opened in New Leaf Plaza last year, and Harper says it’s convenient for people to pop into the grocery store after their daily or weekly workout routine.

“Or, in my case, once-a year routine.”

Discount retailer Marshalls to open in former Borders space at NewMarket Square

UPDATED — In December, Have You Heard? reported that with any luck, by the 2012 holiday season shoppers in east and west Wichita would have two new Marshalls stores to shop at.

That’s going to happen – at least for west-siders.

The Massachusetts-based chain, part of the TJX Cos., has a building permit for $580,000 to remodel the former Borders space at NewMarket Square at 21st and Maize Road.

“I can confirm we do have a lease with Marshalls,” says Jerry Jones, vice president of commercial development for Slawson Cos., the NewMarket developer.

The approximately 23,000-square-foot building was built in 2001. Borders left the space in September.

Jones referred questions about the opening to a Marshalls representative, who wouldn’t confirm that the store will be coming to Wichita.

“When opening new stores, we tend to announce our plans when we believe it is the right time to do so competitively,” wrote spokeswoman Doreen Thompson in an e-mail. “Generally speaking, it is our practice not to announce store openings until close to an intended opening date.”

It looks like that will be in time for the holidays – or before.

“I like that it brings a large apparel component to the center,” Jones says. “It’ll really complement everything else we have out there real well.”

Slawson Real Estate handled the lease for the landlord.

Marshalls also has looked at opening on the east side, but that deal doesn’t seem to be as far along.

TJX owns Marshalls and sister store T.J. Maxx, which is in Eastgate Plaza at Kellogg and Rock and at Westgate Market at Kellogg and Dugan.

Marshalls, which is similar to T.J. Maxx, is known for carrying designer clothing and homeware at discount prices — “never pay full price for fabulous” is the current tagline — though shoppers often have to wade through merchandise to find those deals.

Look for more details later today on Marshalls’ entry into the Wichita market.

Marshalls may open in east, west Wichita

UPDATED — With any luck, by this time next year, shoppers in east and west Wichita will have two new Marshalls stores to shop at.

It looks like the Massachusetts-based retailer is working on two possible deals here.

Parent company TJX Cos. owns Marshalls and sister store T.J. Maxx, which is in Eastgate Plaza at Kellogg and Rock and in the Westgate shopping center at Kellogg and Dugan.

Marshalls is similar to T.J. Maxx. Marshalls is known for carrying designer clothing and homeware at discount prices — “never pay full price for fabulous” is the current tagline — though shoppers often have to wade through merchandise to find those deals.

No one with TJX returned calls for comment, and no one else involved in the deals is talking.

Sources, though, say here’s what’s in the works:

On the west side, Marshalls is considering locating at NewMarket Square at 21st and Maize. The former Borders Books space is the likely new home.

On the east side, the retailer is negotiating at Regency Lakes at 21st and Greenwich.

There’s about 50,000 square feet between World Market and where the new Cabela’s is going to open in 2012.

One retailer could take the entire space or it could be divided.

There’s also a pad site available in front of Cabela’s.

Landmark Commercial Real Estate is marketing the project.

It looked like TJX’s HomeGoods concept was briefly considered for Regency Lakes, but it sounds like that’s now off the table.

This isn’t the first time Marshalls has appeared close to a deal here, so there’s still a chance it may not happen.

We’ll let you know.

Ross Dress For Less signs for east-side store a week after inking west-side deal

WICHITA — East-siders, Ross Dress For Less has not forgotten you.

Last week, Have You Heard? reported the discount chain is opening in 25,000 square feet of the former Circuit City space on West Kellogg.

Now, the national retailer has signed a deal for the 25,000 square feet Barnes & Noble is vacating at Eastgate Plaza at Kellogg and Rock Road.

The bookstore’s last day in business there is Dec. 30. A Barnes & Noble spokeswoman previously said the chain decided to consolidate its Wichita stores into one location at Bradley Fair.

Ross Dress For Less will take possession of the building in February. Remodeling should take two or three months.

“It’s great for the center,” says Andy Boyd of Walter Morris Cos., who is one of the brokers who handled the deal.

With stores such as Friends Fashion and T.J. Maxx already at Eastgate, Boyd says there’s a nice cluster of clothing shops.

“It’s kind of becoming more of a fashion-centric center.”

Boyd says Ross Dress For Less’ two leases here also represent growth nationally and confidence in Wichita.

Christian Ablah of Classic Real Estate and Randi Lefko of R.H. Johnson in Kansas City also were involved in the deal.

Ross Dress For Less coming to Wichita

UPDATED — Discount retailer Ross Dress For Less, which is similar to T.J.Maxx, is entering the Wichita market.

“I’m surprised it’s taken them this long . . . because this will be a good market for them,” says Doug Malone of J.P. Weigand & Sons.

Malone represented Bldg Management of New York City in the deal for about 25,000 square feet of the former Circuit City space next to Kohl’s in the Westgate shopping center on West Kellogg.

“They’ve got a great price point,” Malone says. “They’re good operators.”

Malone expects Ross Dress For Less to open in the second quarter of 2012.

There is about 11,000 square feet left to lease in the former Circuit City space. Malone says he’s talking to a number of potential tenants.

“We’ve had some people that would fit real good next to Ross,” he says.

This is a difficult time of year for new deals, though.

“Most everybody that’s doing a 2012 store has already made a deal,” Malone says.

He tries to stay on their radars so if another deal falls through, Wichita will be top of mind for retailers.

“That’s the whole point about getting their attention.”

Malone says Ross Dress For Less and Kohl’s make a powerful attraction.

“I mean, now you’ve got a really good lineup.”

Look for news of a possible east-side Ross Dress For Less soon.

Rue21 coming to Derby Marketplace

WICHITA — Rue21 is coming to Derby Marketplace at 71st South and Rock Road.

The clothing store, which targets younger males and females, will open in 4,500 square feet of the 7,500 square feet between Maurices and Dressbarn just south of Target.

Construction began Monday, and the store should open Oct. 28.

There will be more Marketplace news coming this fall.

“We do have a couple of different junior anchors that we’re getting extremely close with,” says developer Mark McPherson.

The stores, which could be anywhere from 15,000 square feet to 30,000 square feet, are similar in size to stores like Bed Bath & Beyond, T.J. Maxx and Best Buy — not that those are necessarily the stores that are coming.

Look for more information soon.

Kirkland’s to leave Towne East Square for Eastgate Plaza

WICHITA — More than a decade after opening at Towne East Square, Kirkland’s is leaving the mall.

The home decor store is not going far.

It’s moving to Eastgate Plaza at Kellogg and Rock, most likely in early September.

“It’s just more convenient for our customers to drive up, run in and run out . . . instead of walking through the mall,” says Sarah Weaver, leasing manager at the Nashville, Tenn.-based company.

The chain has 280 stores in 28 states. As the company’s leases in malls expire, they’re moving to dominant shopping centers outside of the malls.

“It’s just a corporate real estate strategy that we’ve adopted,” Weaver says.

The Wichita move will take Kirkland’s from 5,755 square feet to 10,000 square feet adjacent to Famous Footwear.

Weaver says nearby tenants, including T.J. Maxx, Toys R Us and Barnes & Noble, are part of the attraction at Eastgate.

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