Target is no longer in the running to open a store in Chicago's Water Tower Place, according to a new report from the Chicago Tribune.
“There are no current negotiations with Target and have not been for some time,” 2nd Ward Ald. Brian Hopkins told the Tribune Thursday. “This is pure speculation, but I believe negative publicity was a factor.”
Beginning earlier this year, Target was rumored to be in the running to replace Macy's at Water Tower Place along the Magnificent Mile.
Neither the Minnesota-based chain nor the property owners ever officially announced any concrete plans or details of ongoing conversations, despite multiple reports.
In an email in March, Target said that the company was "continually evaluating potential store locations to serve new guests," but did not "have any new-store news to share."
A spokesperson from Brookfield Properties, which owns Water Tower Place, said at the time that they had yet to confirm future plans for the location and any public discussion was "purely speculative."
In order for any location to come to Water Tower Place, the spokesperson said the vision would need support from the mayor's office, alderman's office, tax assessor's office, the Mag Mile Association and the local community.
The speculation over Target potentially opening a storefront at Water Tower Place drew mixed reviews, with some residents saying it would have made for a convenient choice but others saying the retail giant wasn't the right fit for the historic building known for high-end stores.
Macy's announced in January that the company would close its storefront in Water Tower Place as part of a strategy to "right-size its store fleet, announced in early 2020."
Macy's announced the company will close 45 of its department stores by the middle of this year, CNBC reported.
Chicago's State Street Macy's location, along with storefronts in Old Orchard, Oakbrook, Woodfield, Orland Park and Hawthorn Court, will remain open, the company said.
The closures are part of a previously announced plan by Macy's to shut 125 locations by 2023, which the retailer outlined last February.