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By Mike Hazlip—
Customers looking for their usual morning dose of caffeine will be disappointed to find the Starbucks in the Marketplace at Birdcage has shuttered its doors.
A notice posted on the door said the location permanently closed on October 3.
“We’re grateful you’ve allowed us to be part of your daily routine—and hope you’ll visit us at one of our neighboring stores,” the notice said.
Sunrise Marketplace Executive Director Kathilynn Carpenter announced the closure on social media Monday saying it was not a landlord decision. She said the landlord is “actively looking” for a replacement tenant.
The vice president of asset management for Gerrity Group, which manages Birdcage, told The Sentinel in an email Wednesday the closure came as a surprise.
“It was a surprise to learn of the tenant’s intent to close the business as of October 3, 2021, particularly because the store appeared to perform well and there is considerable amount of term remaining on the lease,” the vice president, Colby Young, said. “We don’t know why they did that; they had been an excellent tenant for 24 years, and we would love to see them remain open in the center.
Young also said “I can assure you the reason is not due to any changes in rent, in fact rent has been the same since 2018 and was to remain as-is until lease expiration.” Young noted the location appeared to be performing well, and Gerrity Group is looking for a replacement tenant for the now vacant space adjoining Barnes and Noble.
Starbucks District Manager Jackie Paduveris told The Sentinel in a phone call Wednesday the closure was related to “the business model,” but referred further questions to the corporation’s public relations team.
In an email sent to The Sentinel Thursday, a Starbucks media relations representative said the closure was related to maintaining “a healthy store portfolio,” but did not offer any specifics.
“As part of Starbucks standard course of business, we continually evaluate our business to ensure a healthy store portfolio. After careful consideration, we determined it was best to close the store at 6121 Sunrise Boulevard in Citrus Heights, CA.”
“As difficult as this is, we must make the right business decisions for the sake of Starbucks long-term growth. All Starbucks partners (employees) working at that store had the opportunity to transfer to one of our nearby locations,” the representative said.
Earlier this spring, Starbucks opened a new drive-thru location in Citrus Heights at 7056 Sunrise Blvd. With the closure of the Birdcage location, which did not have a drive-thru, Starbucks now has four locations in Citrus Heights.
While Starbucks store closures are infrequent, news reports from New York show the company recently closed two Buffalo locations. Reports by multiple media outlets indicate some suspicion among workers that the closures were related to a recent attempt to unionize.
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