Shopko will soon leave behind empty buildings throughout our region and the hunt is already on to fill the future vacancies.
Shopko’s passing on to the great big box store in the sky, but depending where you look, the vacancies could be short-lived.
“Any time you have an empty building, that’s not good for the community, that’s not good for the building,” said Dean Kaufert, Neenah’s mayor.
In Neenah, the community development staff is trying to convince Target to take Shopko’s spot and avoid any sort of ripple effect.
“The neighboring businesses to that–they’re nervous because any time you see a large reduction in daily traffic, that’s less people that might utilize their services right next door,” he said.
Other candidates would be Trader Joe’s and Whole Foods, but the mayor is not limiting his options.
He is in the early stages of talking to developers about changing the building to meet modern needs.
“It’s really, really important to me as mayor and to this community to try and get someone to try and utilize that space as soon as possible,” said Kaufert.
The city’s Community Development department says Neenah’s Shopko building is close to eight acres in size and valued at about $6million.
All Shopko stores are expected to close by the middle of June.