SHREWSBURY, Mo. (KMOX) – What’s to become of an eight acre site along Watson Road in Shrewsbury once the Rothman Furniture store there closes later this year?
That was the focus of a small, informal Town Hall meeting held Monday night at the Shrewsbury government center.
Mayor Felicity Buckley kicked off the discussion.
“I’d like a Costco’s,” she said. “But I’d also like it to look like the Champs Elysees, so I might not get that either.”
Reportedly the Shrewsbury site at 7737 Watson Rd., which is zoned retail with no immediate plans to change that, is already under contract to an undisclosed buyer.
However, that didn’t stop the speculation as to what else could go in to replace Rothman.
Resident Marcy Lauter threw in her two cents’ worth.
“I’m thinking since this is a family community we need some family events in there,” she suggested. “Like a multiplex theater for families, and an ice rink.”
After 90 years in business the family-owned furniture chain recently announced plans to shut the doors on six locations in Alton, Affton, Bridgeton, Shrewsbury, and both O’Fallon Missouri and O’Fallon Illinois.
Supposedly the competition from much larger furniture retailers like Ashley Furniture and Ikea forced Rothman to announced plans to close, despite the fact they’re still turning a $50 million annual profit and employ nearly 250 people locally.
Liquidation sales are planned for next month.
Shrewsbury resident Sue Truman suggested that new apartments might be nice, but she was adamant about what she doesn’t want to see go in after Rothman closes.
“I just don’t want another grocery store,” she said, laughing.
Monday’s session was simply to discuss possible ideas and no formal decisions were made.