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Nordstrom Says it Will Close Place Two Stores Over 2 Years

SEATTLE -- Nordstrom Inc. will phase out its Place Two stores over the next two years by not renewing the leases on three units and converting the fourth to a clearance center.<BR><BR>The Place Two division was formed in 1976 for markets too small to...

SEATTLE — Nordstrom Inc. will phase out its Place Two stores over the next two years by not renewing the leases on three units and converting the fourth to a clearance center.

The Place Two division was formed in 1976 for markets too small to support Nordstrom’s regular-sized specialty stores. The stores are like mini-Nordstrom’s, offering scaled-down versions of the chain’s women’s, men’s and footwear assortments in 17,000-to-20,000-square-foot settings. Most Nordstrom stores are from 150,000 to 250,000 square feet.

The division peaked in 1983 with 10 units. Six have already closed due to “marginal” performances, the company said in a statement Tuesday.

The four remaining units, all in Washington State, represent only 1 percent of the chain’s square footage and a “minimal” amount of the chain’s $3.6 billion in sales last year, according to a spokeswoman.

The Place Two store in Lacey will close June 30. The SeaTac unit will close Oct. 31. The Crossroads Mall location in Bellevue will remain open until May 1996. The three stores employ 205 people.

By early 1995, the Bellingham unit will be converted to a Nordstrom Rack clearance store.

Nordstrom said it will hire a firm to assist with career counseling and offer a severance package to those who leave the company.