TEXARKANA, AR (KSLA) - A major tenant of an ArkLaTex shopping mall will close its doors after almost four decades in business.
Sears plans to shut down its store and automotive center in Texarkana, Texas, sometime in September.
A liquidation sale will start June 16.
The Central Mall location is one of 72 Sears and Kmart stores being closed as the company says it is losing business to online shopping.
"It will create a large opening in our mall that we will work to fill," said Mike Malone, executive director of the Texarkana Chamber of Commerce.
"I'm sure we will fill it with another retailer who will be a good community citizen," he later added.
News of the closure came as a surprise, Malone said.
"We regret to hear they are going to be leaving. We made it through the first round of cuts. But, unfortunately, the second round we are going to lose that store to our community."
Sears' corporate headquarters issued the following statement Wednesday:
"We have been strategically and aggressively evaluating our store space and productivity and have accelerated the closing of unprofitable stores as previously announced. As a result, we hope to retain a portion of the sales previously associated with this store by maintaining our relationships with the members who shopped this location."
Sears has been a part of Central Mall since the shopping center opened in 1978.
"We have been shopping here, me and my wife, for 40 years," Preston White said.
"I think it will be a hardship on the whole area if Sears has to leave here in this area of Texarkana."
Sears officials did not say how many employees will be affected by the closure of its Texarkana store.
They did say those workers will have an opportunity to apply for open positions at nearby Sears and Kmart stores.