After nearly 65 years as a major player in the Canadian retail landscape, Sears closes its doors today.
Over the weekend and again Monday, shoppers pored over the last of the merchandise selling for major discounts, as business owners and others snapped up fixtures and mannequins.
Jan. 8 was the final day for Sears in Chilliwack and in many locations across Canada.
It was back in June when Sears Canada announced the closure of more than half its locations across the country impacting 2,900 employees at the time.
In B.C. the retailer closed its doors in Grand Forks, Kamloops, Sechelt, Creston and Abbotsford.
Then in September, the company sought court approval to close another batch of stores, including Kelowna, Nanaimo and Burnaby, as well as seven others across the country. This affected 1,200 employees.
A couple weeks later, and Sears Canada applied to liquidate all remaining stores and assets.
This weekend, the last of the merchandise in the Chilliwack Sears was selling for between 60 and 80 per cent off. By Monday, the last of the clothing was going for 90 per cent off, fixtures for 75 per cent off.
Employees sold off the last of the available items and prepared for unemployment as of Tuesday, while Cottonwood Mall will be left with a second vacant anchor store.
“Sears thanks its customers for their loyalty and support since 1953, when it began serving Canadians coast to coast under its then corporate name, Simpsons-Sears Ltd.,” said a statement on the company’s website.
When asked about the impact on the closure of Sears on Cottonwood Mall, general manager of Morguard Leasing Kristal Hambly pointed to the fact that the Sears building and its surrounding parking lot is actually a separate property not managed by Morguard.
Hambly did not respond to questions about the loss of another anchor tenant on other leaseholders in the mall.
The building that housed Sears and the surrounding parking lot is owned by Concord Pacific out of Vancouver. The value of the property according to BC Assessment is $18,772,000. Of that, $18,591,000 is the value of the land with the building valued at just $181,000.
Concord Pacific did not immediately respond to a question about its plans for the building.