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A Brief History of Nordstrom Rumors in New York City

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Image by Leyla Novini
Image by Leyla Novini

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On Thursday, Nordstrom announced plans to open in Manhattan. It's the first time in years that a major U.S. department store has decided to open a new flagship store in the city, and it was a long time coming: Rumors of Nordstrom's arrival have been around since Racked launched in 2007.

Below, we've laid out some of the rumors as they've emerged over the past five years. Why did it take so long? According to Peter Nordstrom, President of merchandising, the store has specific building requirements that are hard to reach in Manhattan. Ceilings have to be high enough; loading docks have to be easily accessible; the entrance needs to be somewhere that brings in street traffic. "It wasn't that there weren't good places," he said at last week's press conference. "Just the configuration was wrong."

November 2007: Nordstrom Inc. signs a nonbinding letter of intent on the former Drake Hotel. The location—440 Park Avenue between 57th and 58th Streets—is pretty ideal, but "nonbinding" is obviously the key word here. Meanwhile, the Daily News reports that the company has been scouting in downtown Brooklyn.

July 2009: News breaks that Nordstrom Rack will open in the former Virgin Megastore in Union Square. So close, and yet so far.

January 2010: The Post reports that Nordstrom wants to open a second Rack at 521 Fifth Avenue in midtown, once home to Circuit City.

August 2010: Crain's suggests another two Nordstrom options, including 125 W. 55th Street, just a few blocks from where the store will actually open.

October 2010: Nordstrom announces that it will open a non-branded charity shop in Soho, causing both jubilation and confusion.

April 2011: New rumors suggest the department store might open in Hudson Yards, the enormous West Side development slated to open...sometime later this decade.

August 2011: Treasure & Bond debuts in Soho. Again, so close—but still no cigar.

August 2011: Marty Markowitz just won't drop this Nordstrom-in-Brooklyn thing. He's not picky, though; he tells the Wall Street Journal that he'll take a regular store or a Rack.

April 2012: After going underground for a while, the rumors about Nordstrom Rack in midtown pop back up. This time, the Post points to 1095 Sixth Avenue at 42nd Street.

June 2012: The Commercial Observer hears the department store wants to open at One 57, the Extell building at 57th and Seventh Avenue. Getting warmer...

Last week: Huzzah! Nordstrom finally announces their plan to open at 225 W. 57th, also an Extell building. Now we just need to wait another six years for the skyscraper to be built.


225 W. 57th Street New York NY