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Weinberger says LL Bean departure not a sign of troubled downtown

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Published: Aug. 3, 2021 at 5:43 PM EDT
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BURLINGTON, Vt. (WCAX) - Burlington’s mayor says he’s not worried about L.L. Bean’s pending departure from the downtown.

The Maine-based retail chain announced Monday it will leave its Cherry Street location and open a store in Williston next summer.

Mayor Miro Weinberger says there are still many local shops open in the downtown area and that when one retailer leaves, it opens the door for another to come in. He says other businesses will not flee and blames the stalled CityPlace development for L.L. Bean’s choice.

“That retailer, given that they are surrounded by a site that’s going through a major redevelopment and has a lot of uncertainty ahead, is sort of a unique position. I understand why they might have felt the immediate years ahead might be challenging. I don’t have any sense that that is linked to other decisions likely to come from other retailers,” Weinberger said.

The mayor says given increased vaccination rates throughout the state, many retailers are beginning to bounce back from the pandemic.

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