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Tuesday, February 11, 2020

It’s official: The Seven Corners Sears is closing

A sign in the Seven Corners Sears. [Freddy Ramirez]
The Seven Corners Sears is closing April 12. There are deep discounts throughout the store.

Signs in the store say all sales are final, no returns are allowed, and points may be redeemed on purchases.

Just last week several employees insisted the store was not closing, but it’s now expected to be included in a new round of closures to be announced soon by Sears’ parent company, Transformco. It wouldn’t be surprising if the Sears at Landmark is on the list, too.

The loss of Sears could hasten the redevelopment of the Seven Corners area. In 2014, a proposal for a 748-unit housing project on the Sears site faced stiff opposition from the community and was ultimately withdrawn for financial reasons.

In 2014 and 2015, there were dozens of community meetings as part of the effort to amend the county’s Comprehensive Plan to spur redevelopment in the area.

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16 comments:

  1. I hope the local leadership really steps up to push for a quick redevelopment. Would hate to see this site sit empty for years.

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  2. I will be sad to see the store leave. The building is a classic icon and having Sears close by was a great convenience. Its sad that we will have yet another big box store vacant. I hope it is not going to be backfilled with another junk store or low end retailer. This seems to be the trend for Mason; like a combined Suds Laundromat and a Title Max. Mason has really declined from having a Lord and Taylor to junk retail and/or vacant stores.

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  3. I wonder if these big box retailers will come back at some point. Right now greedy landlords keep rising rent to the point where running store fronts are not profitable. I am guessing it will get to a point where store front supply outpaces demand, and landlords will eventually bleed money until they reduce the prices until it's at a point where having a storefront is profiable again.

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    1. Asking for market rate does not make a landlord greedy.

      Sears should have innovated to compete with Amazon. Actually - seeing as how THEY had a catalogue and delivery system decades ago, they should have had an online order and home delivery system in place years before Amazon.

      While I'm sad that Sear's is closing for nostalgic reasons, their lack of success in the age of convenient online shopping is no one's fault but theirs.

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  4. Route 7 transit can't come soon enough for the sake of Bailey’s/7-Corners. The pace by which we are "studying" it is ridiculously slow.

    The next study/phase/analysis is going to START later this year and take another 12-18 months. Meaning it MIGHT actually get funded and built in another 5-7 years??? What happens when (not if) in that time there is another recession and development and infrastructure funds dry up.

    I wish there more of sense of urgency by local jurisdictions to move this along.

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    1. Those studies are in fact important and each study is accomplishing a different goal - the last study identified the location of bus stops and whether it would be middle or side-oriented BRT, and the next I believe (not sure about this) is going to start the process of land acquisition where VDOT doesn't already have right of way - it's either that or they are doing the more detailed engineering work necessary.

      But yes I agree that there is room for them to speed the process up. Increasing bonding capacity while interest rates are so low for projects that are going to have a huge return on investment like BRT is something that I think credit agencies wouldn't bat an eye at and maintain our bond ratings. Not an expert mind you, but it's something that I'd explore.

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  5. Why in the heck did residents oppose the housing project?

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    1. Because....hissy fit.

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    2. They didn't outright oppose it - at least not most of the folks involved. They opposed the scale of what was proposed.

      At the time the elementary school (Baileys) that fed that area was 130% of capacity and bursting at the seems. Since then Baileys Upper has helped the elementary school situation, but Glasgow and Justice are at capacity. There was also the road and transit situation and at the time there was a lack of trust that the promised transit improvements would in fact come and we'd be left with more congestion. Since then we've seen walkability improvements to 7 corners and Envision Rt 7 project (BRT) progress - albeit very slowly - but some probably are still skeptical and I'll admit the transit situation is one aspect that I look at closely to make sure is closely timed with development.

      In the end, a special working group was established for the sears parcel, as Ellie notes, and the projected scale of the development was scoped back. IMO, it was a good and hard-fought compromise. The NIMBYs still don't like that there will be any residential and the developers get a little less profit, but those of us who are pragmatists see a good compromise between community and developer and especially with interest rates as low as they are and the location of the property, a developer will still be able to make a handsome profit.

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  6. The vacated homeless shelter on moncure ave/Columbia pike, closed down but homeless people still partying all night there drinking/doing drugs/ the county approved for the new apt/shops/restaurants to be built there , the developer has yet to even raze or do anything to that property and the shelter moved out end of October 2019, so if this developer has approval and still not moving his behind imagine these other properties in Mason, has such high potential and location right beside Arlington and close to DC ! It is great place we only need the developers to see the potential of this area

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  7. Area is a disaster, vacant stores means more vagrants and crime that scare away developers. Add that to crap transit, NIMBYs and disengaged leadership which equates to a failing district in a booming economy. Can't wait to see what happens to this place when the economy take a downturn.

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  8. Felt I had to chime in once! Sparky I think most of the comments are from people outside of Baileys cross roads and are from west falls church or Annandale that like to spread disinformation spread about Baileys the past few years on here hoping to change people’s perspective of this area in hopes of developers coming to there parts to increase there value of there homes. Not all of these comments are genuine concerns about Baileys Xroads I can assure you of that ! Have a great hump day at the office sparkies!

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  9. So looking back at the news release from back in November this location was not part of store closing mentioned then. I wonder if Sears is closing even more stores than that announcement.

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  10. Sears Everywhere has one foot in the grave, The other on a banana peel.

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  11. The article failed to mention that during the 2015 comp plan revision process a community consensus was reached on a very scaled down mixed-use redevelopment on the site which included about 250 market rate residential units. Referencing only the long dead, pie-in-the-sky wish for 750 units on the Sears site by the developer seems like a scare tactic and contributes to the reason Seven Corners lags so far behind Rte 7 to the east and west in responsible redevelopment.

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    Replies
    1. How does merely referencing this contribute to the lag?

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