PRESQUE ISLE, Maine — Speculation about the identity of a new retailer expected to soon move into the Aroostook Centre Mall has come to an end. Company and mall officials confirmed this week that national retail clothing chain T.J. Maxx will open a store in the facility sometime next spring.
The retailer, which opened its first stores in 1977 in Auburn, Mass., and Worcester, Mass., now has more than 900 stores throughout the United States. The company announced in a press release on Monday that the Presque Isle store will be 25,000 square-feet. Though the lease was signed in June and construction work began a few weeks ago, Patti Crooks, the mall manager, said Tuesday that she had not been able to name the new tenant until the company officially announced it.
“We have literally been working on this for two years,” Crooks said Tuesday. “It is such a neat store and we are very excited.”
The retail firm, which sells mostly clothes but also carries housewares and other similar items, needs such a large space that the mall has been forced to shuffle stores around in order to accommodate the new tenant.
The store will be at the front of the mall, where Rent-A-Center and Trader Joe’s Outpost currently are located. T.J. Maxx will have both interior and exterior doors. Rent-A-Center and Trader Joe’s Outpost will be moving across the hall in the very near future.
Construction crews will be renovating the space once occupied by Rent-A-Center and Trader Joe’s Outpost.
“This store will employ 50 or 60 full- and part-time employees,” said Crooks. “It is going to be very good for this area and for the economy of northern Maine.”
The store likely will open in the spring of 2012, although no date officially has been set. At this point, the nearest T.J. Maxx is in Bangor. A T.J. Maxx also opened in Ellsworth earlier this year and there are seven other stores across Maine.