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Green Acres J.C. Penney to close April 24

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After more than 62 years in business, the J.C. Penney store at Green Acres Mall will be closing its doors this spring.

Squeezed by competition from online big box stores and a darkening financial outlook, the Plano, Texas-based company made the decision to close its Valley Stream location after a standard annual review, according to the department store chain’s senior specialist of corporate communications, Kristen Bennett.

“This decision is the result of an ongoing review of our store portfolio,” she said. “It’s never easy to close a store, however, we feel this is a necessary business decision.”

The store employs roughly 115 workers, Bennett said, and those not eligible for transfer will be given a separation package and a three-hour career training class. The location’s effective closing date is April 24.

J.C. Penney had been one of the original anchor stores to open at the mall, which was constructed in 1956 on the northern portion of the former Curtiss Airfield. At the time, Green Acres was an open-air mall, and one of the first on the Island. Along with J.C. Penney, Gimbels and Lanes rounded out the shopping center’s three anchor stores at opening.

With the loss of its Green Acres location, J.C. Penney shoppers will need to head to its stores in Brooklyn and Roosevelt Field Mall in Garden City, according to Bennett. The century-old company also announced it was closing five other stores across country. It still operates roughly 840 stores nationwide.

The announced closure comes after a disappointing third-quarter financial report from the company in which it announced that total net sales had decreased from $2.65 billion last year to $2.38.

The department store’s financials for the year did have some bright spots, however, with J.C. Penney reducing its net losses from $151 million per share last year to $93 million this year.

And in recent years the company has shown the potential for a rebound, with a 2017 report indicating that sales had risen nearly 2 percent, far exceeding shareholder expectations.