WINFIELD, Kan. (KSNW) – Department store giant J.C. Penney announced Friday they will be closing five locations in Kansas, including the locations in the towns of Winfield, Chanute, Lawrence, Hutchinson and Great Bend.
The retail store said in a statement to KSN News, “Our decision to close these locations was made after careful analysis of store performance, local demographics, ability to deliver on the Company’s growth strategies and proficiency to execute a seamless omnichannel experience through online order fulfillment, same-day pick up, exchanges and returns.”
Shoppers at the location in Winfield all agreed the impact will be deeply felt in the town of just over 12,000 people.
“Well I’m very disappointed, I feel bad for the elderly people who can’t go out of town to shop, for the single parents who don’t have the discretionary funds to go out of town to shop,” customer Sandee McDade of Winfield said.
With J.C. Penney leaving, that leaves a limited number of places to go for clothing.
Others, sympathized with the employees, including a former employee.
“I can’t believe it. I worked at this Penney’s for 12.5 years and it’s always here. For the longest time it’s always been my baby. I love the store, I love my customers. To find out it’s just heartbreaking to me. Very emotional,” former employee Jamilah Ismail-Farid said.
The date at which the store will permanently close its doors is unknown at this time.