The Target store located at Mondawmin Mall in the heart of West Baltimore, seemed to be popular with Baltimore residents from different areas of the city. However, Target’s headquarters announced Nov. 7 the store would be closed in Feb. 2018, allegedly due to the Mondawmin location, “underperforming.”

The Target store at Mondawmin Mall is scheduled to be closed in Feb. 2018. The store employs about 134 people. (Photo credit: Sean Yoes)

“This decision was not made lightly. We have a rigorous process in place to evaluate the performance of every store on an annual basis, closing or relocating under-performing locations as needed. Typically, a store is closed as a result of seeing several years of decreasing profitability,” according to a statement by Kristy Welker, a Target spokeswoman. Welker also stated “eligible” Target employees at the Mondawmin location would be offered the opportunity to work at other Target locations.

The reaction to the decision to close the store, which opened at Mondawmin in 2008 as part of a larger mall revitalization, was fast, furious and varied on social media, from disbelief, to anger, to numerous conspiracy theories about why the decision was made. The general consensus of the commenters is, people are not happy with the planned closing.

AFRO reporter Jennifer Wright went to the store Nov. 8, the morning after the decision to close the store was made public and spoke with Target shoppers.

“I don’t think the store should close. This store sells a variety of things here that you can’t get anywhere else,” said a woman named Melva, from Harlem Park, who didn’t want to use her last name.

“I don’t want to see this store close,” Thomas Brown, a resident of Chinquapin Park-Belvedere, said succinctly.

“I think it’s terrible,” said Ness of Liberty Square, who also did not want to use her last name. “We need it over here. People will be out of a job, this location was close for most of the workers. What are seniors going to do? A lot of people at the senior center on Towanda (Ave.) come over here to shop.”

Targets says it is also closing stores in Florida, Georgia, Kansas, Louisiana, Michigan, Texas and Illinois.

AFRO reporter Jennifer Wright contributed reporting on this story.