RICHMOND — As part of an effort to close dozens of stores this year, Macy’s will shutter its Richmond location at the property once known as the Hilltop Mall, according to a letter sent to the city and county from the company.
In closing the store, Macy’s will lay off 133 employees, according to Richmond Mayor Tom Butt, who shared a portion of the Macy’s letter in an email. The layoffs will happen between March 14 and March 27.
It’s part of a plan to close 125 stores through 2023 and cut about 2,000 corporate jobs, which the company announced early last year.
It is also the latest development for the Hilltop shopping center, for which residents and city officials long hoped for a developer to breathe new life.
In 2017, LBG Real Estate Companies and Aviva Investors bought the 1.1 million-square-foot shopping center, which went into foreclosure in 2012 and then to the auction block. The firm had signed Taiwanese American grocery chain 99 Ranch Market to anchor the space, and the owners said it was all part of a plan to become a “robust and all-inclusive Asian-centric shopping and entertainment destination” that would include restaurants, family entertainment venues and new outlet stores.
They also embarked on some renovations, including plans did not materialize. Earlier this year, LBG representatives told the San Francisco Business Times that the property was rebranded as the East Bay Science and Technology Center and was up for sale.
“They have tried to brand it as a potential ‘life sciences’ campus, but there is little interest. The only interest to date is from potential warehouse and distribution companies,” Mayor Butt said in his email.
The Macy’s closure will leave only Walmart at the former shopping mall, Butt said. The former retail giants that once anchored the property, including JC Penney and Sears, have closed in recent years.
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