ST. CLAIRSVILLE - The wing of the Ohio Valley Mall anchored by the Sears department store is continuing its transformation in anticipation of the impending opening of Boscov's Department Store.
Friday morning, the Shoe Dept. Encore opened in its new location, the former spots occupied by GAP and Baby GAP.
It's right across the hallway from its former location, but the Shoe Dept.'s new store has much more space, affording the store greater opportunities to serve its customers needs.
The Shoe Dept. celebrated its grand re-opening Friday at its new location inside the Ohio Valley Mall. From left, are: Kathie Billiter; Debra Bell, manager; Carla Osborne, district mananger; Michelle Tomlan and Michael Minder.
The new location of BAM?(Books-a-Million) is across from the Shoe Dept. and closer to Sears at the mall, more than tripling in size from its previous location.
It wasted little time getting started as the first customer in the new store made his purchase exactly two minutes after the doors opened.
"We have a great deal more space," commented Carla Osborne, the district manager for Shoe Dept. "We've never had a clearance room before."
Previously, the clearance items at Shoe Dept. were located on shelving, intermixed with the rest of the store's inventory out on the main floor.
Now, the clearance room is located in the rear of the store.
Renovation work on the previous GAP and Baby GAP took approximately nine weeks according to employee Michelle Tomlan.
Once the new locale was ready, however, the employees worked tirelessly to finalize the move and prepare for the grand re-opening.
"We started getting everything ready to move on Sunday and by (Thursday) night, we were ready," Tomlan said.
The move has enabled Shoe Dept. to offer a greater range of footwear for men, women and children, along with a large range of accessories.
There's enough space to move now that the employees have begun wearing ear pieces and communication devices to better coordinate customer service.
BAM (Books-a-Million) moved into its new location just across the hall and closer to Sears from the Shoe Dept. BAM was the final store that occupied the corner spot near J.C. Penney that was originally occupied by Walden Books.
Now, BAM has more than three times the space of its previous location and its inventory and offerings have increased accordingly.
Across the walkway, renovations are under way to bring the most recently announced new tennant, MC Sports, to the mall.
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