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JCPenney store in Coralwood Shopping Center to close

By Staff | Jun 5, 2020

Two local JCPenney stores are closing their doors due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The popular retail locations at the Coralwood Shopping Center in Cape Coral and at Gulf Coast Town Center in Fort Myers will close as part of the company’s “store optimization strategy.” The company filed for bankruptcy May 15.

These JCPenney stores are among nine total in the state and 154 nationwide that will shut down in the coming weeks.

“While closing stores is always an extremely difficult decision, our store optimization strategy is vital to ensuring we emerge from both Chapter 11 and the COVID-19 pandemic as a stronger retailer with greater financial flexibility to allow us to continue serving our loyal customers for decades to come,” said Jill Soltau, chief executive officer of JCPenney, in a release. “I am incredibly grateful to our talented associates for their ongoing dedication and their passion for meeting and exceeding our customers’ expectations during this difficult and uncertain time. All impacted associates will be treated with the utmost consideration and respect.”

According to the June 4 release, the company expects “additional phases of store closing sales will begin in the coming weeks.”

JCPenney said they intend “to reduce its store footprint and focus resources on its strongest stores and powerful eCommerce flagship store, jcp.com.”

The first round of store closures are expected to take 10-16 weeks.

“We will remain one of the nation’s largest apparel and home retailers as we continue to operate a majority of our stores and our flagship store, jcp.com, to ensure our valued customers continue to have access to the products and brands they need and want,” Soltau said. “As of June 4, 2020, we have reopened nearly 500 stores since government officials have eased COVID-19 restrictions and we look forward to opening more. We are excited to welcome back our customers and associates at these locations, and we will continue to take actions to be best positioned to build on our over 100-year history.”

The JCPenney location at Edison Mall remains open.

-Connect with this reporter on Twitter: @haddad_cj