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RACINE - The Burlington Coat Factory is coming to Regency Mall in late summer, accompanied by numerous stores moving locations leading up to the opening.

Steve & Barry's will temporarily close Tuesday to make room for Burlington Coat Factory and will be relocated near J.C. Penney by mid-May.

Mary Abrego, of Racine, likes going to the Burlington Coat Factory, 2345 W. Ryan Road, in Oak Creek, but she doesn't like making the drive. Abrego said now she will likely visit the mall more often rather than going elsewhere.

That is exactly what Curt Pruitt, Regency Mall's general manager, is hoping for.

"This will definitely add to our traffic volume," Pruitt said. "It is one less reason for people to travel to Milwaukee or Chicago for their shopping."

China King, a fast food Chinese restaurant, moved to Regency Mall six months ago and its co-owner, Shi-Shin Chow, is looking forward to Steve & Barry's moving over to the J.C. Penney side of the mall where his restaurant is located. He is hoping that the new store location will "bring more traffic to me."

Not everyone is happy about it though. Sam Akhtari owns A Dollar store and had to move from his original location. In the process, Akhtari said he is losing more than $10,000 by having his store closed for eight days and moving costs.

"This is hectic for us," Akhtari said. "It affects the business." He said after his business' lease with the mall is up, he will be moving his business elsewhere. Originally, Akhtari had room for six aisles in his store, but he is now down to three.

Cyndi Knapp-Finley, Regency Mall assistant general manager, is in charge of moving stores within the mall when needed, and said it was necessary to make room for Burlington Coat Factory.

She said in her 28 years working at Regency Mall, this new relocation was one of her biggest struggles.

"I didn't have enough time available to keep holiday tenants into the extended season and relocate other tenants," Knapp-Finley said.

Representatives from CBL & Associates, which owns Regency Mall, have been negotiating with Burlington Coat Factory for nine to 12 months, only recently finalizing the details.

Pruitt said that the store movement should not inconvenience shoppers because there will not be any external construction.

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