Byline: David Moin

NEW YORK — Looking to plug a big gap in the Southwest, Nordstrom Inc. will reportedly open its first store in Arizona, in the Scottsdale Fashion Square.
“We’re hot on Phoenix,” Jack McMillan, co-chairman of the Seattle-based chain said Monday. “We’ll have something to announce before too long.” In addition, the 79-unit, $3.9 billion chain is continuing its penetration of the Chicago market and plans to open its first unit in downtown Chicago, at 520 North Michigan Ave. The 300,000-square-foot project was announced last week by the developer, The John Buck Co.
Nordstrom’s first Chicago-area store opened in Oakbrook, Ill., in 1991. Last October, a unit opened in Old Orchard Shopping Center, and in early March a unit opened in Woodfield Shopping Center. McMillan declined to provide further details on the planned sites.
Sources disclosed this week that Nordstrom in the Scottsdale Fashion Square will open by late 1997 or early 1998. The mall is anchored by Dillard’s and Robinson’s/May. Officials from Westcorp., the managing agent of the mall, were not available for comment.
Connected to the mall is another retail center called the Camel View Plaza, which includes Neiman Marcus and Bullocks.
Most of Nordstrom’s newer units built in the Nineties generate $75 million to $80 million in annual volume. However, two weeks ago, Nordstrom opened its first store in New York State, a 219,000-square-foot unit in White Plains, which is seen generating $90 million to $100 million in annual sales. The company has announced plans to open in the Short Hills Mall in New Jersey next August, and in the Roosevelt Field Shopping Center on Long Island in spring 1997. Both are expected to be big revenue generators, sources said.
In the Eighties, when business was more plentiful, Nordstrom’s strategy was to target a city and plan a cluster of stores in the area. Asked if more than one unit could open in the Phoenix market, McMillan said there are no plans for more than one now and that the chain’s focus is on building larger stores to try to draw from a bigger radius.