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Boscov's might open area store

December 10, 2004|by JULIE E. GREENE

julieg@herald-mail.com

WASHINGTON COUNTY - Boscov's Department Store officials want to open a store in the Hagerstown area within the next few years, Boscov's senior vice president of real estate and development said Thursday.

Company officials are looking at two sites in the Hagerstown area, but John Hlis would not say where they are.

Depending on the developers, a store could open in early 2006 or 2007, Hlis said.

"We think Boscov's would do well in that marketplace and we would offer customers a great-looking store," Hlis said.

Reading, Pa.-based Boscov's is the last full-line department store in the nation, Hlis said.

Boscov's sells men's, women's and children's clothing, electronics, home furnishings, appliances, toys, cosmetics and jewelry, he said. Boscov's also makes its own chocolates sold in its candy department.

Hlis said Boscov's typically has stores at malls. When they can't get into a mall, company officials consider Main Street environments, large shopping centers or free-standing stores, he said.

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Valley Mall Marketing Director Julie Rohm said there are no current plans to expand the mall and none of the anchor stores' leases are up for renewal.

Rohm said Sears and Hecht's own their land and stores so she did not know if they were negotiating with Boscov's.

Sears and Kmart recently announced plans to merge and Rohm did not know what effect that would have on the local Sears and Kmart stores.

A Sears corporate spokeswoman could not be reached Thursday to determine whether Sears was expected to remain an anchor store at the mall.

Hecht's has no plans to leave Valley Mall, spokeswoman Nancy Chistolini said.

Boscov's has 41 stores, Hlis said. There are stores in Maryland, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York and Delaware.

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