An artist rendering shows what the Boulder Macy's store could look like after it is redeveloped. Courtesy Boulder planning documents.

Fate of area Macy’s stores remains fuzzy as closures mount

BOULDER — Macy’s Inc. (NYSE: M) announced this week that it would close an additional 125 stores across the country over the next three years, but the department-store chain’s Boulder Valley and Northern Colorado locations were not among those listed. 

The fate of the Boulder Macy’s at the Twenty Ninth Street shopping district has been in question since late 2018, when BizWest first reported plans to redevelop the site into new office spaces. Local business and government officials have speculated that the store will eventually close, but it is unclear when that could occur. 

“We will focus our resources on the healthy parts of our business, directly address the unhealthy parts of the business and explore new revenue streams,” Macy’s CEO Jeffrey Gennette said in a prepared statement Tuesday. “Over the past three years, we have shown we can grow the top line; however, we have significant work to do to improve the bottom line. We are confident the strategy we are announcing today will allow us to stabilize margin in 2020 and set the foundation for sustainable, profitable growth.”

Since 2016, Macy’s has announced the closure of hundreds of stores, but the company’s Colorado locations have thus far been spared. Locally, Macy’s operates in Boulder, Broomfield, Fort Collins and Loveland. Company representatives did not respond to requests Wednesday for an update on plans for these locations. 

Part of Macy’s strategy in recent years is to sell off or redevelop underperforming stores in areas with expensive real estate and an appetite for new office space. 

“Macy’s Inc. has been reviewing its real estate portfolio across the country to see if there are opportunities to improve the use of our assets,” Blair Fasbender Rosenberg, Macy’s vice president of corporate communications, told BizWest in November 2018. “As part of that strategy, Macy’s is exploring the possibility of redeveloping its Boulder (store).”

Since 2018, Macy’s real estate professionals have been working behind the scenes to prepare for redevelopment of the roughly 150,000-square-foot space. The project has proved controversial, with critics expressing concerns that adding more luxury office space without corresponding affordable housing will exacerbate Boulder’s jobs/housing imbalance. 

“After months of studying the building, we started to appreciate how groundbreaking this project could be,” Macy’s vice president and head of real estate development Chris Erb wrote in a site review application submitted to city planners last year. “The idea of adaptively reusing department store boxes is still in its infancy, and this project presents the opportunity to set the standard for best practices in reusing outdated, under-utilized, but resource-rich buildings in an innovative way while proactively evolving to changing values and markets.”

BOULDER — Macy’s Inc. (NYSE: M) announced this week that it would close an additional 125 stores across the country over the next three years, but the department-store chain’s Boulder Valley and Northern Colorado locations were not among those listed. 

The fate of the Boulder Macy’s at the Twenty Ninth Street shopping district has been in question since late 2018, when BizWest first reported plans to redevelop the site into new office spaces. Local business and government officials have speculated that the store will eventually close, but it is unclear when that could occur. 

“We will focus our resources on the healthy parts of our business, directly address the unhealthy parts of the business and explore new revenue streams,” Macy’s CEO Jeffrey Gennette said in a prepared statement Tuesday. “Over the past three years, we have shown we can grow the top line; however, we have significant work to do to improve the bottom line. We are confident the strategy we are announcing today will allow us to stabilize margin in 2020 and set the foundation for sustainable, profitable growth.”

Since 2016, Macy’s has announced the closure of hundreds of stores, but the company’s Colorado locations have thus far been spared. Locally, Macy’s operates in Boulder, Broomfield, Fort Collins and Loveland. Company representatives did not respond to requests Wednesday for an update on plans for these locations. 

Part of Macy’s strategy in recent years is to sell off or redevelop underperforming stores in areas with expensive real estate and an appetite…