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Sears to close for demolition

Original post made on Apr 15, 2011

Sears, along with many other businesses on the southwestern corner of the San Antonio Shopping Center, will close its doors in the next few months if the plan for a new mixed use complex on the site is approved by the City Council on April 26.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Friday, April 15, 2011, 11:05 AM

Comments (32)

Posted by Cuesta Park resident, a resident of Cuesta Park
on Apr 15, 2011 at 2:11 pm

Sears will be missed! I've bought children's clothes, appliances large and small, bedding, and much more in this store over the years.

Posted by Al, a resident of Shoreline West
on Apr 15, 2011 at 2:33 pm

"demolished to make way for the new mixed-use complex, which will combine both retail and living space, similar to Santana Row in San Jose"

Living space? the traffic will be out of control if not already. Oh and the caltrain station closing should help out.

Way to think ahead!!

Posted by OMV Resident, a resident of Old Mountain View
on Apr 15, 2011 at 3:49 pm

@AI - I completely disagree with your reaction - I think the overall concept of putting housing along with the shops at Santana Row IS thinking ahead. By separating housing from shops for decades and decades, we've created cities where you need to drive to get anywhere and do anything.

Putting housing in a place like San Antonio Center makes sense on many levels, as the people who live there will have the opportunity to walk to buy their groceries, walk to many other restaurants and shops, walk to Caltrain or a lot of bus lines nearby to go to SF, Palo Alto, SJ, etc, and easily bike to Castro Street (using Latham) or the other way towards Palo Alto. Yes, the people who live there will also drive, but far fewer of their trips will be by car than if you put housing completely separated from shops and services.

Also, you're way behind on the Caltrain situation. Caltrain is no longer considering closing San Antonio Station on weekdays, only weekends, and is trying to find a way to keep it all open all the time. And Caltrain just reported RECORD ridership in February, despite all the sensational reports about its demise. Read about it here:
Web Link

Posted by tommygee54, a resident of Rex Manor
on Apr 15, 2011 at 4:59 pm

I am sad that the Sears store does not want to stay at the center. We do need Sears in Mountain View! Otherwise we have to drive to Cupertino which would then be the closest Sears store to Mtn. View.
I have lived in Mtn. View since 1964, with my first visit to this Sears store in 1965 when I was a ten year old. I am sad to see it close...

Posted by Garrett, a resident of another community
on Apr 15, 2011 at 7:13 pm

The Sears was handy at the time but got old and tired along with rest of the shopping center. Time to build and show what can be done with this corner. Something that would not put people to sleep, not just a bland color walls with roofs. Use of design that can WOW people. SA shopping center had its moment, RIP

Posted by Ben, a resident of Monta Loma
on Apr 15, 2011 at 7:14 pm

Dumb and dumber,

With Sears being replace with housing and we are also going to have housing at HP, we will have the 101 highway traffic increase from stop-and-go to a crawl.

Smart move by the City Council that is in the developers pockets. High much more stupid, dumb, and ridiculous can these people be.

Overpopulation and overdevelopment to overburden our support resources and increase traffic are alive and growing.

Expect more cut in government services along with no tax increases for the rich developers.


Posted by PH, a resident of another community
on Apr 15, 2011 at 8:42 pm

Good ridance to sears. I had three really awful experiences with them, two at the Mountain View store. They are out of touch with modern retailing, customer service and problem resolution. I was a good customer at one point in time, but they drove me away and I won't ever shop with them again.

Posted by Bill McFarland, a resident of Willowgate
on Apr 16, 2011 at 9:51 am

I LOVE Sears! I bought a Sears hot water heater there, Kenmore washer & dryer, DieHard battery, various tools, a two-foot wide push broom, Sears canister vacuum cleaner, electric sander, energy-efficient refrigerator with top freezer, etc. I am so sad to see it close.

When I was a kid we would look through the Sears "wishbook" catalogue as a family. Those were the days!

Sears should come back to the center after the renewal.

Posted by worker , a resident of Old Mountain View
on Apr 16, 2011 at 1:18 pm

It is very sad seeing sears closing. I work there and everyone there is so close together we became a family and its hard seeing that we will not be working together. We always tried our best to provide good customer service and help one another when we needed. We build great memories and its sad to see it all be gone soon. For those people say that they hated sears and are glad to see it go will also miss it because even though they don't want to admit it there were good items that are useful at a good price!

Posted by Bernie B, a resident of Old Mountain View
on Apr 16, 2011 at 9:00 pm

Sears won't return, because it refuses to pay market rent. They are generally profitable only when the rent paid is dirt cheap; anything over that amount and they can't deliver the profits to the hedge fund "Guru of Greenwich." It's really as simple as that.

Posted by Dumas, a resident of Old Mountain View
on Apr 18, 2011 at 6:56 pm

How many readers of Voice care about Rite Aid closing?

Posted by MV Mama, a resident of Old Mountain View
on Apr 18, 2011 at 8:10 pm

Aw, kind of sad. I remember loving going there when I was a kid in the 70s because they had a candy counter with Swedish Fish. That mall was awesome back then, Liberty House, Norney's, Thrifty, Contempo Casuals, The Menu Tree... Now it's just all run down and sad.

Posted by Observer, a resident of Old Mountain View
on Apr 19, 2011 at 6:42 am

It's amazing how sentimental some are regarding a store representing a large corporation.

It's just a store people, get over it. It's amazing how sentimental some are regarding a store representing a large corporation.

Posted by Bill, a resident of Willowgate
on Apr 19, 2011 at 2:28 pm

May I suggest that Observer watch the movie "Miracle on 34th Street?"

Posted by Susan, a resident of Castro City
on Apr 19, 2011 at 2:46 pm

Has anybody been to Santana Row and checked out the Housing available? "Affordable" has never been defined to them. If the same thing happens in Mountain View we will be a laughing stock. I have not seen any "affordable" housing in MV yet! 300K for a studio? That's NOT affordable!!!

Posted by Someone who lives here, a resident of Monta Loma
on Apr 19, 2011 at 4:20 pm

"or a lot of bus lines nearby to go to SF, Palo Alto, SJ, etc, and easily bike to Castro Street (using Latham)"

Obviously, you don't live around here...take the bus to SF??? Only if you have two hours each way. And bike to Castro via Latham??? Have you checked the police blotter lately??? Not a very safe route.

Posted by phm, a resident of The Crossings
on Apr 19, 2011 at 4:29 pm

I'll definitely miss Sears, especially for Lands End clothes and the watch repair guy. And I'll miss Rite-Aid too because I hate CVS and some things are only found at a full service drugstore. But I'm for mixed use development. Mountain View is a job center and not building housing here will create MORE traffic from more commuters. I don't think the proposed San Antionio Center development will be anything like Santana Row, though, it'll be its own thing.

By the way, good news today (4/19/11) about Caltrain.

Posted by tommygee54, a resident of Rex Manor
on Apr 19, 2011 at 6:31 pm

I too will miss the watch repair guy. But there is no watch repair at the Sears at Vallco. The 'repair person' only takes care of wrist bands as I was told by the repair person at the Sears in Mtn. View---and he has been at this Mtn. View Sears for 17 years taking the place of the former repair man who was at the Sears for over THIRTY years.
I have never had a bad experience at this Sears EVER since I first stepped in it in 1965. In fact I remember outside one of the side doors (facing Sears automotive) a coffee shop that I used to frequent with my family. It closed at some point in the 70's for an eyeglasses shop. That coffee shop AND The Menu Tree is where my family ate alot back then. Why not???!!!
So what if most of us are sentimental. Also there is a washer and dryer combo in my garage that were bought in the mid 90's that are still in working order. Sears had QUALITY for sure.
As for Rite-Aid, I still think of them as Pay Less. But Rite-Aid I am sure will be back in the renovated center. Burger King as well I assume.
But change happens...

Posted by moving forward, a resident of Shoreline West
on Apr 19, 2011 at 11:31 pm

It will be sad to see the store leave as it was sad when Penny's left. Sears stock will do just fine. Yes we will miss the employees we have come to consider friends. I hope Sears (and others that are leaving) will help their employees with job placement. Mountain View is the forward thinking community that the other neighboring city (PA) only wishes they can be. Mountain View will be just fine traffic wise. San Antonio is already a major thorough way getting from 101 to 280. What a great tax generator too. Property taxes on top of sales taxes, and to think of all that traffic spending additional dollars for gas and shopping at the new center. Let's just hope that the housing is reasonably affordable. Shopping wise: I'll be back.

Posted by moving forward, a resident of Shoreline West
on Apr 19, 2011 at 11:34 pm

Hey tommygee54, at Rite-Aid on Grant Road there is a wonderful watch repair place. They have always been able to fix a variety of my watches from old Timex windups to my Omega digital. They also have a good selection of watch bands. I'm not an employee or work for the store, just passing on good service to someone in need.

Posted by Litsa, a resident of Monta Loma
on Apr 20, 2011 at 10:53 am

Traffic is gonna suck, like someone said about potential housing here and at the old HP site.

I can't really say I'll miss Sears, but I am going to miss its Landmark significance, since it's been there since the dinosaurs roamed the earth.

Posted by OMV Resident, a resident of Old Mountain View
on Apr 20, 2011 at 2:45 pm

Hey, 'Someone who lives here' --

Way to misquote my comment and then twist it around to make your own point.

I did not say "or a lot of bus lines nearby to go to SF, Palo Alto, SJ, etc...", I said "Caltrain or a lot of bus lines nearby to go SF, Palo Alto, SJ, etc." You can take Caltrain from San Antonio Station to SF in about an hour and to San Jose in under a half-hour. You can take buses from Showers/ECR to downtown Palo Alto, Castro Street, and many other places in a reasonable amount of time. You can also bike from the center to a number of other places. I live in Old Mountain View and have ridden along Church to Latham a number of times with no problems. My point was that there are a lot of transportation options (and shopping options) at this site, so it's a logical place to put some housing, rather than in the middle of nowhere - which is where this housing will go if the NIMBYs have their way.

Posted by PH, a resident of North Whisman
on Apr 20, 2011 at 9:40 pm

Maybe they fix the GIANT pot hole at San Antonio and ECR!

Posted by tommygee54, a resident of Rex Manor
on Apr 21, 2011 at 10:48 am

Being that some of us are reminiscing since Sears is leaving the SA center, I still miss JC Penny. But also does anyone remember Rhodes department store at this center in the 70's. How about Hal's Music Store?
Also in need of renovation at this center; the area bounded by Showers Dr between California and El Camino. That area has lots of open space called a parking lot as well as buildings here and there.
By the way what does ECR stand for?

Posted by ConfuzzledShopper, a resident of Cuernavaca
on Apr 21, 2011 at 10:34 pm

I like the stuff in Sears too, but this store was just a strange shopping experience. Overstuffed racks, piles of shoeboxes with assorted sizes and styles of shoes, vacuums hidden behind baby clothes, tables of weird perfumey products in awkward places, tools near clothes... It just never made sense and wasted too much of my time. On my last visit, I couldn't find a soul to help me select vaccuum bags for my Kenmore vacuum (a decent machine. Kenmore products are solid). I hope the new center will be clean and organized. I would not mind if Sears came back so long as it too modernized and served their customers with some pride.

Posted by mark n, a resident of Old Mountain View
on Apr 28, 2011 at 9:45 pm

East Charelston Road I was working at the svale town center project when the loan was pulled and 300 guys were laid off. Target went ahead and tore down to rebuild and it took em six months. Svale still hasn't finnished their santana row. Sears store needs replacing but mt view is losing an anchor store. The only time i went to that center was for sears/kenmore/craftsman etc. so occasionally another shop while there Rite aid is what used to be thriftys they carry stuff no one else does. some minor hardware fishing camping and other out door needs. used to have tv tubes too - now im dating myself. those lil fufu shops are for xtra money and who has that. Ill stop at a bakery music store or other creative arts store for things but not looking for a bunch of trendy restuarants to be there and gone boarded up cuz no one has a reason to walk by on their way to SEARS

Posted by mark n, a resident of Old Mountain View
on Apr 28, 2011 at 9:53 pm

yea and oh yea, the watch guy is good at rite aid- grant n el camino. And thank Goodness we still have the true value on el Camino, it is closer to us than the back of a depo store is to the front...

Posted by GC, a resident of Sylvan Park
on Jun 11, 2011 at 6:14 pm

Unfortunately the neighborhood does not have what it takes to be Santana Row. Just look how two other examples, Vallco and Sunnyvale Mall have failed to become the next SR. You will need more than a few stores and restaurants under a store. You need the variety and status to draw in the crowd. (sorry Walmart 24 Fitness x 2 and Trader Joes.) The empty Mervin's store for 3 years shows the demand potential to the area. Someone was sold a pile magic beans. Let's hope I am wrong.

Posted by mike, a resident of Old Mountain View
on Jul 2, 2011 at 2:42 pm

Yea! I bought my first guitar at Hal's in the late 70's. I lived in the greenhouse apts. My mom used to work in an office where the fish market was, and my brother and I used to have to hang out there. I still have the now tattered guitar strap that says Hals Music and their phone number on it.
It is funny how there is hardly a trace of it's existence, and that all these years later, as I reminisce, is may be more important to the kid who got his first guitar there. It lives on in the heart of the beholder. I don't even remember the brand of the guitar, and the strap was/is pretty cheesy. For all I know they overcharged me. However I did do the search today.
I wonder how many people got their first whopper next door?
This came up because I used the strap on my 83 Gibson explorer until my x-wife smashed it in 2002. Hence the X. Yesterday I finally found another 83 Gibson explorer. I was considering using the Hal's vintage, cheesy, tattered strap.

Posted by Mr. Rogers, a resident of Castro City
on Jul 5, 2011 at 3:12 pm

@tommygee54: ECR. Really? You seriously don't know and can't figure out what that stands for huh? Wow.

Posted by Edmo, a resident of another community
on Jul 28, 2011 at 5:20 pm

Miss Hal's Music store and the 70's version of that shopping center

@tommygee54 - ECR El Camino Real

Posted by AL, a resident of another community
on Dec 27, 2011 at 12:34 pm

I haven't been by this area in a long time. Wow, it sure has changed. No more Old Mill 6. We use to go to there all the time to watch movies. San Antonio Hobbies in it's old location, the arcade that was next door; all gone. I used to work at Sears Peninsula Credit. It was a suppose to be kept secret from the customers in the main store because we didn't want irate customers coming through our door. Fielding calls from the all the Sears stores including the one in San Antonio was our main focus. So many irate and deadbeat credit card customers. Always mad because we would cut their credit because they were always pass due. Fun times. We were off the same street as Old Mill.

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