Woodland Mall ‘transformation’ to include Von Maur, other stores

Woodland Mall Von Maur
A rendering of the Von Maur store slated for Woodland Mall. (Woodland Mall via Facebook)

KENTWOOD, Mich. (WOOD) — A new store is getting ready to move into Woodland Mall, as Sears prepares to close its doors.

Von Maur is coming to the mall on 28th Street SE. Woodland Mall announced the addition in a Facebook post Thursday morning.

Von Maur is described as a high-end, family-owned retailer that features a mix of name brand and specialty products. A spokesperson told 24 Hour News 8 the 90,000 square-foot store will take over a portion of the former Sears.

Construction on Von Maur is expected to start in 2018, with the store opening in the fall of 2019.

Von Maur already has two locations in Michigan, at the Briarwood Mall in Ann Arbor and Laurel Park Place in Livonia. The new store is expected to eventually employ 150 workers who are mostly full-time.

Woodland Mall said the department store is part of a multi-million dollar transformation, which includes creating a whole new wing were Sears now sits.

Woodland Mall says Von Maur will be the anchor and 10-15 smaller shops will be added to the space, along with three to four restaurants that have yet to be named. The mall is also working on adding stand-alone shops and restaurants near the mall’s Celebration Cinema.

“We’re calling it a transformation more than a redevelopment, because it’s going to add so much to this property and this region that this region hadn’t seen before,” said Lyndsey Hicks, a spokesperson for Woodland Mall.

Shortly after Wednesday’s store announcement, Kentwood Mayor Stephen Kepley made the following statement:

We are delighted to welcome Von Maur as the newest anchor to Woodland Mall — and the newest national retailer to choose Kentwood as a destination. The brand is synonymous with excellent merchandise and exceptional customer service, making it a destination in the 30-plus communities it serves in 14 states. We appreciate the investment that PREIT continues to make in Woodland Mall, which offers a signature retail and dining experience to the West Michigan community that Von Maur will only enhance.”

Sears will permanently close its store in Woodland Mall on March 26, according to WARN documents, which companies must file with the state in advance of mass layoffs and closures. A total of 84 employees — 78 in the main store and six in the auto center — will be laid off.

The Woodland Mall Sears is one of 26 Sears stores nationwide that are closing. The Limited at Woodland Mall also recently shut down.