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Cedar Rapids Kmart on List of Closing Stores

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CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa - Sears Holdings announced Thursday it would close two Kmart stores in Iowa one at 2727 16th Ave. SW in Cedar Rapids and another in Davenport.

No Sears stores were included on the closure list, posted on Sears corporate website.

Specific closing dates were all noted as "to be determined."

The list contained 79 of the potential 120 stores the company had announced this past Wednesday would be closed.

"Additional updates will be posted to click here as they become available," the company said in a statement introducing the list. "Employment varies by store and format, and at this time we cannot provide the total number of impacted associates."

Hoffman Estates, Ill.-based Sears had cited a weak holiday shopping season as a reason for the closings.

The retailer operates more than 4,000 stores in the United States and Canada.

A male employee who answered the phone at the 16th Avenue location said that employees learned of the store's impending closure Thursday, but were not told any details as to when the store would be closed or whether any jobs would be lost. Other employees said they were instructed not to comment.

Several shoppers Thursday afternoon were not surprised to learn about the possibility of the store closing. Karen Nichols, of Cedar Rapids, only occasionally shops at the 16th Avenue location, preferring instead the 180 Collins Road NE store.

"It sort of seems like they've been letting this one go for a while," she said.

Others, such as Kathy Gordon, were upset to learn that their preferred shopping destination might shut down. Gordon lives just a few blocks away from the store, and is concerned how the possible loss of business and jobs could affect the west side of Cedar Rapids.

"I'd just as soon see the money stay in the the neighborhood," she said.

Most of the customers interviewed Thursday said they saw no indications that the store was scheduled to close, although visitors to the pharmacy were told they would need to transfer their prescriptions to another location.

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