Business changes to take place in Stevens Point


The Mirror reporter

The holiday season is right around the corner and big business changes are being made in the Stevens Point area.

With the upcoming closure of the Stevens Point Kmart, 45 local jobs will be lost. According to a release from the state Department of Workforce Development, the store’s employees will begin losing their jobs during a two week period beginning January 21. Both the DWD and the North Central Wisconsin Workforce Development Area Rapid Response Team will be taking action and work with the affected employees to help them find transition assistance and future employment options.

A release from Sears Holdings on November 2 announced that the Stevens Point location was one of the 45 Kmart locations along with 18 Sears stores that would close throughout the United States in January, with the Stevens Point location being the only store in Wisconsin on the list.

The city is already looking at possible redevelopment plans for the site, one option being two student housing buildings. Each building would have 67 units and 204 beds, totaling in 134 units and 408 beds, with a commercial building being located on the site closer to Division Street. Stevens Point Mayor Mike Wiza stated the purpose of the proposal was to get feedback before the project moved forward, with no action being taken at this current moment.

An updated site plan is expected to come but does not have a set date or timeframe.

Heid Music announced plans to leave Wisconsin Rapids and lease the Mitchell Piano Works building in Stevens Point. The decision to move was made after careful monitoring of foot traffic and their ability to recruit staff in either Stevens Point or Rapids, with other deciding factors including a greater growth in arts supporting retail, and the higher population in Stevens Point. Mitchell Piano Works is set to officially close on December 30 and is running a retirement sale until then. In January, Heid Music will begin work on modifying the building to suit their business needs and be operational within a few months thereafter.