Kmart at Schuylkill Mall Plans to Close

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NEW CASTLE TOWNSHIP -- A major retailer announced Tuesday that it's leaving a mall in Schuylkill County.

Kmart employees at the store near Frackville were told the place will close before the end of the year.

The announcement of Kmart's closing comes just a few weeks after another anchor store closed at the Schuylkill Mall. Now shoppers don't know how the mall is going to survive.

"I thought Kmart would have made it. I really did."

The retail store at the Schuylkill Mall announced it will be closing its location near Frackville in mid-October.

"It opened in 1980, guess it ran its course," said George Breame of Frackville.

A Kmart employee tells Newswatch 16 that management at the store held a meeting to let employees know the store will soon shut down.

Just a few months ago, employees at the Sears in the mall got the same news. That anchor store closed earlier this year.

Sears and Kmart are owned by the same company.

"Everything cleaned out of here, how many times? It's unbelievable."

People who shop at the mall near Frackville say they're afraid that Kmart space will end up the same way Sears did: another empty store in the mall with nothing left to show.

"I'm not sure what they're going to do. There's one anchor store left after Kmart goes and that will be BonTon," said Tammy Norwich of Frackville.

Many shoppers say it's not a shock that Kmart will be closing. They say it's been a long time since the Schuylkill Mall had its heyday.

"I visited the place once a week, all the stores."

Now people in Schuylkill County don't know if any other business will want to move in.

"I don't know if they can get anybody in here or not!"

"I hope somebody comes in and takes over the mall, does the renovations and fixes it up so it can get to back where people want to come back," Norwich added.

Kmart's corporate office says the liquidation sale at the store will start in July.

As for the 80 Kmart employees, they were told they can apply at other Kmart or Sears stores.

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