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Macy's Tucson Mall store at risk of closing

The Macy’s store at Tucson Mall is vulnerable to being closed next year because of low sales, according to data compiled by Morningstar Credit, a Chicago-based investment research company. 

Macy’s announced Aug. 11 that it planned to close about 100 of its 728 stores to increase profits and stock values,  invest more to improve remaining stores and beef up online and sales. The company has not announced the locations.

Although the Morningstar report wasn’t available, a number of news organizations reported that 28 Macy’s stores in malls were especially at risk because their sales fell below Macy’s 2014 average of $169 per square foot.

Sales at the Tucson Mall Macy’s were $158 per square foot, said the Phoenix Business Journal and other publications.

Tucson Mall is the largest mall in the Tucson area, with about 1.28 million square feet. Macy’s is one of its four main anchors, with the others being Dilliard’s, Sears and JCPenney. The mall, along with Park Place Mall, is managed by General Growth Properties of Chicago.

"Macy’s has not publicly announced which locations will close," said Kevin Berry, GGP’s senior vice president for investor and public relations. " We don’t have any information specific to the location at Tucson Mall."

Malls have struggled to fill vacated large anchor spaces as sales in physical stores give way to online sales. The 34-year-old Tucson Mall was 94 percent leased in June, Berry said.

Closure of the Macy’s store would leave only one in the Tucson area, at Park Place. The Macy's at El Con Center closed in 2008.

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A spokeswoman for Macy’s did not return a phone call and email asking for comment.

When it announced the closures, Macy’s said many of the stores would close early in 2017 and the rest would close as leases and operating covenants expired, were amended or waived. Some stores will be closed because the underlying real estate is more valuable than the value of the store.

Macy’s said that while all the stores to be closed are “cash flow positive,” their sales volumes and profits have been declining steadily in recent years. The closures would be in addition to 90 stores that Macy’s has already closed since 2010.

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