Semiahmoo Shopping Centre

Semiahmoo Shopping Centre

Still a Zellers market

While most Zellers locations are either becoming Targets or closing, the one at Semiahmoo Shopping Centre will remain a "redefined" Zellers.

South Surrey will keep its Zellers store open, a Hudson’s Bay Company spokesperson has confirmed.

Tiffany Bourré told Peace Arch News Monday that despite earlier word the Semiahmoo Shopping Centre location would close March 16 – given as recently as that morning – a decision has been made to keep it open.

“It will continue beyond March 2013,” Bourré said.

“Zellers will redefine the store format to focus on fashion apparel and a refined home product offering, with a shared merchandise mix with other HBC banners,” she added by email.

The future of existing employees is less clear.

Bourré said given that job descriptions and responsibilities may change with the new model, staff will have to reapply.

The majority will be given that opportunity, she said.

“Those who remain will continue their service without disruption to seniority or other benefits,” she added.

Last summer, HBC announced plans to close 64 Zellers stores that weren’t among 189 sold to the Target chain in 2011.

At the time, exactly what the future held for the South Surrey site was unclear.

The site’s pharmacy files were transferred to the nearby PriceSmart Foods pharmacy last spring.

In recent weeks, customers have been told various scenarios, everything from the store being in liquidation to plans for it to be renovated and reopened as an HBC clearance centre.

Zellers staff were reportedly advised before Christmas that the store would remain.

Bourré was unable to provide further details regarding the change of heart by PAN’s press deadline Monday afternoon.