TOLEDO, OH (WTOL) - Department store, Elder Beerman may soon cease to exist. The store's parent company is up on the auction block.
How would having yet another vacant building affect our area?
"Retail in general is going through a paradigm shift. Are more people buying online and not doing the big box stores," said Toledo City Councilman Tom Waniewski, whose district, District 5.
Bon Ton, the parent company of Elder Beerman, owns over 200 locations nationwide, many of which that are in malls or popular shopping areas like Westgate.
With other stores seeing a similar fate, a lot of real estate is now sitting empty. This potential closure would be a letdown for many who still like to go out and shop and physically choose their merchandise without the barrier of a computer screen.
Jeanette Gamble of Maumee shops at the store often because of the great sales.
"I'd feel disappointed. You know. I'd be really disappointed if it closed. I just, I like the quality of clothing. I like the store. I like the employees. It's a very nice place to shop," Gamble said.
Recently, the company sold off 40 of its locations to keep from going under. That includes the Elder Beerman store in Adrian, Michigan.
Unfortunately, that wasn't enough, and now four more of our stores located in Findlay, Bowling Green, West Toledo and the Carson's store in Monroe face a shut-down.
"You know, this is still a very viable area. There's a lot of retail here. It was once referred to as ground zero of retail. I still believe that. Particularly because you're pulling from Sylvania, you're pulling from Michigan easily, and the West Toledo spending abilities are still very high," Waniewski said.
Court documents show, the winning bidder is scheduled to be approved on Wednesday by the U.S. Bankruptcy Court.
It is expected that the company will be bought by a liquidation company that will close all retail locations to pay off its debts.