PLAINFIELD TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WOOD) — There are new plans for the shuttered Kmart building in Plainfield Township.
Township board members Monday unanimously approved a proposal to transform the building at N. Kent Mall NE between Plainfield and Jupiter avenues into a mixed-use facility. The proposal calls for changing the back 70% of the space into an indoor self-storage area. The remaining storefront would serve as retail space.
The plan also includes upgrading the inside and outside of the building and paving the way for future development of commercial outlots on the site of the former mall parking lot.
Plainfield Township’s Kmart closed in 2016, along with the 68th Street location in Byron Township. They were among the nearly 1,500 Kmarts that shut down nationwide.
In addition to the growing popularity of online shopping over brick and mortar stores, the aging buildings have been challenging to fill, since they’re built to suit Kmart.
“We have heard from many communities around the state and country that finding replacement tenants for large retail spaces the size of Kmart has been very difficult, so this mixer use presents a viable solution for the immediate future,” Plainfield Township Trustee Ben Greene said in a Facebook post, adding that he is “grateful that this will no longer be a dead space.”
The developer told trustees that while some businesses have shown interest in setting up shop in the revived retail section of the building, there are currently no confirmed tenants.