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Kohl’s Announces Two Valley Openings at Shuttered Mervyn’s Locations

Kohl’s Corporation announced that it will open new stores in Northridge and Sun Valley, occupying two former Mervyn’s stores, which closed early this year. Kohl’s fortunes during the recession could not be more opposite those of the stores it is replacing. While Mervyn’s joined the ranks of Circuit City, closing its doors for good, Kohl’s is in the midst of a nationwide expansion. The new locations are among a dozen in the Los Angeles area and 30 statewide that will open in October. The department store chain plans to open about 50 stores in fiscal 2009, most of those having been purchased from bankrupt Mervyn’s, said a spokeswoman for the company. The Sun Valley store will be located in the Canyon Plaza Shopping Center, at 8501 Laurel Canyon Blvd., while the Northridge store will open next to Target on Corbin Avenue near Nordhoff Way. A former wine shop at the Northridge location’s northeast corner is being converted into a Bob’s Big Boy restaurant as part of a redevelopment plan for the area that includes the Kohl’s project. The spokeswoman could not provide additional details on the new stores or the number of people who will be employed. Jack Kyser, founding economist at the Los Angeles County Economic Development Corp., said the expansion of Kohl’s is a little bit of good economic news for an area that needs some. “For mall owners this is great news because you don’t have a big empty building. And you have people upgrading to what Kohl’s wants so there are some construction jobs being created, too,” Kyser said. Mervyn’s was hard hit by the recession and filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy in October 2008. The company had about 120 stores in California at the time. Two months later, Kohl’s bought 31 of the Mervyn’s stores at a bankruptcy auction. That purchase did not include the shuttered Mervyn’s at Fallbrook Mall, which houses the Valley’s only existing Kohl’s store. Kevin Mansell, Kohl’s president and chief executive, said at the time that the acquisitions would give the company an “increased presence in under-penetrated markets.” Thom Senzee

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