FARGO - No firm date is being released yet for the closing of the south Fargo Kmart store, the last Kmart in the Fargo-Moorhead area.
Transformco, the parent company of Kmart and Sears, released no new information in a three-sentence statement sent to The Forum Tuesday, Nov. 19, responding to a request for a firm date for shuttering the store at 2301 S. University Drive permanently.
The statement reiterated previous information saying that the store will close in mid-December.
Liquidation of the store’s stock and fixtures has been going on since September, and as of Monday, Nov. 18, much of the back and sides of the store stood empty, with strips of dirty tile marking where product shelving once stood.
Stock on many of the remaining shelves is noticeably thinner, with signs proclaiming 25 to 70% off for the store-closing sale.
No employees were at the customer service desk and other than those running the cash registers, the rest of the store’s employees appeared to be redistributing stock or removing old fixtures.
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An employee supervising the cashiers said the store manager was unavailable. She said questions were to be fielded by corporate media relations.
The south Fargo store was one of the first 18 Kmart stores to open when the company launched in 1962. In recent years, as the chain had announced Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection and subsequent store closings across the country, the Fargo store was able to remain open.
Fargo once had two other Kmart stores. The store at 1305 19th Ave. N. closed in 1994 and the store at 4427 13th Ave. S. closed in 2003.
The Moorhead Kmart on Highway 10 East, which had opened in 1979, was closed in late 2016.
The Fargo Sears store, which was one of the two original anchor stores for the West Acres shopping mall when it opened in 1972, was closed in 2017 as that retailer whittled down its holdings.
The Sears space is still being filled. Best Buy moved its West Acres store there in June 2018, taking up much of the volume. The CRAVE American Kitchen and Sushi Bar opened Oct. 29 in that wing as the first part of The District. The District is envisioned to fill much of the remaining Sears space with a cluster of restaurants.
In October 2015, the Sears Hometown Store at 3218 Highway 10 in Moorhead closed its doors after seven years in business.