COLUMBIA — The brown paper, boarded-up windows of the vacant Circuit City building on Bernadette Drive will soon be replaced by a view of clothing racks and cash registers.
“Whenever we’re looking for a new location, we consider the area and the demographics,” Houghton said. “We consider areas where people are fashion conscious yet value conscious.”
The company sees these characteristics in Columbia, Houghton said.
Marshalls sells brand-name clothes, footwear, accessories and home merchandise at discount prices and has more than 820 stores, according to the store’s website. The company has 12 stores in Missouri.
Each Marshalls store usually offers 60 full-time and part-time positions, Houghton said. Houghton expects many of the positions in the new Marshalls to be filled by Columbia residents.
“It’s gives a lot of opportunities for students and other community members,” said Don Laird, president of the Chamber of Commerce.
In addition to job opportunities, Marshalls is expected to bring more customers to Columbia.
According to Mike Brooks, president of Regional Economic Development Inc., Columbia is a regional retail center that attracts shoppers from outside the city.
“As a community, we certainly benefit by those customers coming in,” Brooks said. “(Marshalls) is an important addition to our offerings as a regional retail center.”
The Circuit City building is one of a few vacant spaces in Columbia that is getting new life. Hy-Vee moved into the former Megamarket on Conley Road in April. In August, Buffalo Wild Wings will move into the former Nowell’s grocery store building on East Nifong.
“It's always positive to have as many of those spaces filled as possible,” Laird said.
Laird and Brooks both said they view Marshalls’ move into Columbia as a welcome change.