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Sears announces renovation, expansion in Sault

Ever make your way to the "up" escalator at the Station Mall Sears store, only to find that it was actually the "down" escalator and you had to walk halfway across the store to correct your mistake? That will be a thing of the past this fall, the com
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Ever make your way to the "up" escalator at the Station Mall Sears store, only to find that it was actually the "down" escalator and you had to walk halfway across the store to correct your mistake?

That will be a thing of the past this fall, the company announced today, when Sears opens its expanded, renovated operation with both escalators side-by-side in the centre of the store.

Sears Canada also announced that its renovated store will be 6,595 square feet larger than its existing 77,311-square-foot outlet, and a passenger elevator will be added.

"This makes the store more accessible to customers with special needs or those with small children," said store manager Scott Jones.

The following is the full text of a news release issued today by Sears:

**************************************************************** Sears Canada Announces Major Renovation of its Sault Ste. Marie Store

Multi-million dollar investment provides Sault Ste. Marie community with an exciting new shopping environment

SAULT STE. MARIE, ON, May 5 - Sears Canada Inc. (TSX: SCC), today announced that its Sault Ste. Marie department store will undergo another major renovation this year to offer its customers a broader selection of fashion apparel and home fashion merchandise.

The department store will remain in full operation until the completion in late fall.

The project is part of Sears Canada's multi-year initiative to ensure that all of its stores receive an appropriate level of refreshment at least every seven years. "We have a large and loyal customer base and we are thrilled to offer them an even better Sears to shop and enjoy," said Scott Jones, Manager of the Sault Ste. Marie store.

"We are expanding our store because we need more space to accommodate and better serve our customers. Once complete, the Sears Sault Ste. Marie store will represent the best of what Sears has to offer." The expansion project will see the Sault Ste. Marie store grow from 77,311 square feet to 83,906 square feet.

The expanded store will reflect the "new Sears" - a modern shopping environment housing a compelling merchandise mix.

The renovated and updated store will offer Sears full-line of national and brand name merchandise, including fashion apparel, accessories, cosmetics, home fashions, home improvement products, major appliances and electronics, as well as a Catalogue shop and Sears "Craftsman" hardware department.

The store will feature a modern, easy-to-shop interior design with extra walkways and the newest in lighting and fixturing.

Sault Ste. Marie shoppers will immediately notice that the escalators, now located at separate locations on the sales floors, will be relocated to the middle of the store with the up and down escalators side by side.

"This will simplify the flow of traffic and make it easier for shoppers," says Jones.

Another significant change to the store is the addition of a passenger elevator.

"This makes the store more accessible to customers with special needs or those with small children," adds Jones. The company believes that investing in the communities in which it conducts business is important.

Over the last three years alone, the local Sears store has donated over $50,000 to charitable organizations in Sault Ste. Marie. Sears Canada is a multi-channel retailer with a network of 122 department stores, 43 Sears Home stores, over 2,200 catalogue merchandise pick-up locations, 144 dealer stores, 15 outlet stores, 51 floor covering centres, 52 auto centres, 110 Sears Travel offices and a nationwide maintenance, repair, and installation network.

The Company also publishes Canada's most extensive general merchandise catalogue and offers shopping online at www.sears.ca.

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David Helwig

About the Author: David Helwig

David Helwig's journalism career spans six decades beginning in the 1960s. His work has been recognized with national and international awards.
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