New businesses to move into Cottman Ave. vacant store property

A long-va­cant North­east Phil­adelphia de­part­ment store prop­erty will be oc­cu­pied and open for busi­ness by the Christ­mas shop­ping sea­son.

What had been a JC­Pen­ney store at Castor and Cottman av­en­ues will be home to a Bob’s Fur­niture store and two cloth­ing stores, ac­cord­ing to Ry­an Mul­vey, an aide to state Rep. John Sabat­ina Jr.

“They’ll be qual­ity stores, too,” Mul­vey said Monday.

Work was star­ted March 4 by Kimco, a Mary­land de­veloper, Mul­vey said. There was a ground­break­ing ce­re­mony at­ten­ded by loc­al busi­ness own­ers, Sabat­ina, state Rep. Mark Co­hen and state Sen. Mike Stack.

Each busi­ness will oc­cupy one of the build­ing’s three floors, Mul­vey said. He said the ex­pect­a­tion is Bob’s and one of the cloth­ing stores will be open and ready for cus­tom­ers by the be­gin­ning of this year’s hol­i­day shop­ping sea­son.

He said Sabat­ina has been in con­stant con­tact with Kimco.

“We al­ways wanted to see something hap­pen at the corner,” Mul­vey said.

JC­Pen­ney closed its store at 2001 Cottman Ave. in 2003. Be­fore Pen­ney used the prop­erty, it had been a Clover store, and be­fore that it was a Lit Broth­ers de­part­ment store. Once well-known, both of those chains that op­er­ated at the prop­erty no longer ex­ist and are part of a Phil­adelphia re­tail his­tory that in­cludes such long-gone stores as Wana­maker’s, Straw­bridge’s, Gim­bel’s and Snel­len­burg’s. ••

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