Neiman Marcus closing downtown Mpls store; Rybak calls it "sad, but expected, turn of events"

Neiman Marcus has been a Gaviidae anchor since 1991.
Neiman Marcus has been a Gaviidae anchor since 1991.

After more than two decades in Gaviidae Commons, Neiman Marcus has informed its landlord, Brookfield Properties, that it will close its only Minnesota store by July 2013.

In a statement, Karen Katz, president and CEO of the Dallas-based Neiman Marcus Group, Inc., said the downtown Minneapolis location "did not meet our long term operational goals."

"As it is so rare that we close a store, the difficult decision was based on a great deal of thought, and a careful study of the market as we very much value the relationships we have established in this market," Katz added.

According to the Downtown Journal, the 118,000 square-foot store employs 107 associates. Employees will either be offered a transfer -- Chicago is the nearest city with a Neiman Marcus store -- or a severance package. There are no plans to relocate the store within Minnesota.

The Star Tribune got reaction from Minneapolis Mayor R.T. Rybak, who successfully lobbied the retailer to extend its Gaviidae Commons lease when it was considering pulling out of downtown back in 2005.

"It's a sad, but expected, turn of events," Rybak said.

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