Mayoral Candidates React to Brooklyn Center Target Closure
Brooklyn Center city leaders are expressing disappointment over Target’s decision to close its store at 6100 Shingle Creek Parkway. Target announced the closure on Monday to its 120 full and part-time workers. The store is expected to close Feb. 2.
“This is a real blow to this city,” said Mike Elliott, a candidate for mayor. “We have relied on this Target for a number of years. The loss of this Target is just devastating to this community.”
Elliott believes Brooklyn Center has gone from shopping hub to business ghost town.
“This is only the latest closure in Brooklyn Center,” Elliott said. “Before Target it was Sears, Kohl’s and the list goes on and on.”
According to Elliott there is a concern among some residents that other business will leave too.
“Folks I talk to are also afraid that the Cub Foods might be closing next,” Elliott said.
Brooklyn Center Wants Target Back
Mayor Tim Willson and other city leaders aren’t closing the door on the retail giant leaving the city. Willson could not do an interview with CCX on Wednesday, but recently posted on Facebook about the sudden shutdown and efforts to relocate Target within Brooklyn Center.
“I’m disappointed that BC Target is closing,” Willson posted. “City, staff and private had been in conversations with the Target Corporation to relocate to a new site in Brooklyn Center.
Willson also wrote, “Monday morning 8:30 a.m. I received a call from a Target representative notifying me of the closing. Something staff, the council and I had no prior knowledge of. I’m not going to sugarcoat this, this sucks. We are a resilient community and will continue to entice new businesses and housing development to our city.”
Willson also sent a letter pitching a new location to Target just days before the announcement. That location is the so-called “Opportunity Site,” a 100-acre area confined by Shingle Creek Parkway to the west, Highway 100 to the east, Summit Drive to the north and Bass Lake Road to the south.
“Target definitely is a possibility to be integrated into the new Opportunity Site,” said Brett Angell, Brooklyn Center’s business and workforce development specialist. “There’s going to be a lot more development and it’s going to be more dense and that will help increase their sales.”
City Feels Sting
City leaders still felt the sting by Target’s decision to pull out. The move was reportedly made because of declining profits at that particular location.
“We’re right in their back yard,” Angell said. “That’s why we want to keep that conversation open, just for the chance they want to stay within their backmyard and near there we’ll have that conversation. We’ll make sure we can fit them within the community.”
Meanwhile, Elliott believes Target’s closing will put additional pressures on the city.
“We’ve seen so many businesses leave,” Elliott said.
He is concerned that residents now have limited options in this suburb of 31,000.
“Before we had folks coming from Robbinsdale and Crystal and other cities to shop here,” Elliott said. “Now our folks are having to leave the city and go shop elsewhere.”