We do not have many options here in Anchorage - now, I hope they will not close but I also hope other companies will come here and open locations.
ANCHORAGE (KTUU) - Nordstrom has announced that it will close its Anchorage department store this fall.
In a statement from the company, a spokesperson says the store's last day of business will be Friday, Sept. 13. Employees were told of the decision Wednesday morning.
The statement says the company analyzed the needs of the market in Anchorage and decided that "it made the most sense to close this store and focus on serving customers at the nearby Rack store as well as online."
Andrew Halcro, with the Anchorage Community Development Authority, was one of the first in Anchorage to know – sharing the news on Twitter Wednesday morning.
Halcro said the ACDA had been working with Nordstrom for five or six months to pitch alternative store ideas, but that ultimately it was clear that "this was going to be a pure business decision."
Halcro said the closure represents two changes – a culture change and a change in Anchorage's demographics.
"We've talked about this for the last 10 years," Halcro told Channel 2 Wednesday morning, "with sales shifting to online and traditional brick-and-mortar stores like Nordstrom have suffered. That's part of a nationwide trend."
Halcro said that as oil companies – and multiple layers of high-paid executives – have scaled back or left Anchorage, the demographics have changed greatly in Alaska's largest city over the last 25 years as well.
"It's not just the fact that consumers have more retail options, it's definitely changed in the demographic," Halcro said. "We've had a shift in the population in the '80s and '90s – growing up here, Nordstrom was the place to be," he said.
"The difference in the marketplace from 25 years ago is dramatically different," Halcro continued. "You have a different makeup of companies and philanthropy and people spending money."
The company said it will work with affected employees to help them find other roles within the company if possible.
The Nordstrom Rack store, which opened in Anchorage in 2015, is still located in the Midtown Mall, formerly known as The Mall at Sears.