News From Terre Haute, Indiana

Business

April 8, 2009

Terre Haute’s Pier 1 Imports set to close on May 27

TERRE HAUTE — A retail store that has been in Terre Haute since the early 1970s is about to close.

Pier 1 Imports, about a mile south of Interstate 70 on U.S. 41, will be closing its doors on May 27, a company official stated Monday in an e-mail to the Tribune-Star.

The store closing will affect 14 employees, the official stated.

“Pier 1 has enjoyed serving our loyal Terre Haute customers over the years,” wrote Whitney Rogers, a company spokeswoman in Fort Worth, Texas, in an e-mail response to Tribune-Star questions. The company, which sells home furnishings and accessories, will make “every effort” to place employees from the Terre Haute store in “surrounding store locations,” she added.

Pier 1 operates stores in Bloomington, the greater Indianapolis area and Champaign, Ill., according to the company’s Web site. In all, Pier 1, which started in San Mateo, Calif. in 1962, operates more than 1,100 stores, the Web site reports.

Employees at the Terre Haute Pier 1 referred media inquiries to the company’s corporate headquarters.

Pier 1 has been in business in Terre Haute since around 1973 when it opened at what was then Honey Creek Square. The store’s current location is in a shopping plaza across U.S. 41 from Sam’s Wholesale Club. Neighboring retail store Circuit City in the same plaza closed earlier this year.

Retailers PETCO and Shoe Carnival remain in the shopping plaza, which is owned by New York businessman Samuel Grunkorn.

Signs inside the store at Pier 1 indicate most items are marked down between 20 and 50 percent.

“I’ve never seen so many businesses going out,” said Denny Sluder, store manager of Shoe Carnival, speaking of the overall Terre Haute economy. Sluder does not expect the closing of Pier 1 to affect his store’s business, however. “We’re a destination place. … We’re strong.”

Andrea Hargis, manager at PETCO, echoed Sluder’s comments. “I don’t think [the closing of Pier 1] will have an impact,” she said. Business is “good” at PETCO, she said.

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