KEY WEST KMART LIKELY TO CLOSE IN MARCH

The Key West Kmart likely will close in mid-March, joining the other Florida Keys Kmart locations, which closed last year. MANDY MILES/Keys Weekly

The Key West Kmart looks to be closing in mid-March, meeting the same demise that befell the other Florida Keys Kmart locations last year. 

The Key West location in the Key Plaza shopping center at 2928 N. Roosevelt Blvd., has not appeared on any recent store closing lists, but the parent company Transform SR Brands LLC has not published any such lists since last year and did not return calls from the Keys Weekly.

An online job listing posted Jan. 10 for the Key West Kmart is seeking people for “Fixture Removal,” and offering $18 per hour.

When asked whether anything was currently slated to replace the Key West Kmart after March 13, Will Langley, principal broker of Berkshire Hathaway Keys Real Estate and Knight & Gardner Realty in Key West, told the Keys Weekly that “we are looking into all options.”

Langley’s office handles the leases and tenants for that and other shopping centers on North Roosevelt Boulevard.

The current store has not had any inventory in its garden center for several months, and some departments of the store are forebodingly empty, but the store remains open its regular hours for now.

Tranformco has assigned its leases of former Kmarts elsewhere in the country to Target, which would be a welcome addition to the Key West shopping options, but nothing has been determined, decided or announced.

“The company was incorporated in 1899 as S.S. Kresge Corporation and renamed Kmart Corporation in 1977,” according to the company’s corporate history on FundingUniverse.com. “The first store with the Kmart name opened in 1962,” according to Discount Store News. 

“At its peak in 1994, Kmart operated 2,486 stores globally, including 2,323 discount stores and Super Kmart Center locations in the United States,” says Wikipedia. “From 2005 through 2019, Kmart was a subsidiary of Sears Holdings Corporation. Since 2019, Kmart has been a subsidiary of Transform SR Brands LLC.”

The Sears in Key West closed in August 2020.

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Mandy Miles drops stuff, breaks things and falls down more than any adult should. An award-winning writer, reporter and columnist, she's been stringing words together in Key West since 1998. "Local news is crucial," she says. "It informs and connects a community. It prompts conversation. It gets people involved, holds people accountable. The Keys Weekly takes its responsibility seriously. Our owners are raising families in Key West & Marathon. Our writers live in the communities we cover - Key West, Marathon & the Upper Keys. We respect our readers. We question our leaders. We believe in the Florida Keys community. And we like to have a good time." Mandy's married to a saintly — and handy — fishing captain, and can't imagine living anywhere else.