Skip to main content

Star Tribune: Developer lining up purchase of St. Paul Macy's store

  • Author:
  • Updated:

Long a retail anchor in downtown St. Paul, Macy’s closed its doors for the last time in March, leaving the downtown without a major retailer – and with big questions about what was to become of the 360,000-square feet of vacant retail space.

Perhaps we're a bit closer to finding out.

The Star Tribune in an exclusive Thursday morning reports that the real estate developer City Center Realty Partners is preparing to buy the five-story, 50-year-old building. The newspaper, through email and document requests, has learned that a founding partner of the San Francisco-based company wrote to a St. Paul economic development official in August that said Macy's had directed him to get in touch with St. Paul Mayor Chris Coleman “as we are the buyer of the building.”

City officials didn't have much to say in response to the Star Tribune, and City Center Realty Partners declined comment.

So the big questions remain, including: Whoever ultimately buys the property, what's to become of it?

City leaders say they view the property, which is still owned by Macy's, as a huge opportunity. Coleman has said he is not inclined to favor a new, single retail store. (One suggestion that has been floated is that Target move in.)

Coleman told in January the loss of pedestrian traffic, sales and property tax, and retail swag is an opportunity to repaint the canvas that is downtown.

Coleman has said he thinks high-end office space could be part of a mixed-use project on the site, but he said he is inclined to leave that decision to market forces, not government. Coleman also said the city would not subsidize another retailer on that site.

Coleman in January said he didn't have a "wish list" for the site. "I think there's all kinds of opportunities. What I do have is a list of why that site is particularly attractive to any developer that wants to come along."

Coleman has said that the Macy's site will be part of a "rebirth" of downtown St. Paul, which has seen the construction of hundreds of housing units, a Lund’s grocery store, and a revitalized Union Depot. The Central Corridor light rail line is almost complete, which would take people very near the Macy's site, and work has begun nearby on a new minor league 7,000-seat baseball stadium for the St. Paul Saints.

Here's Coleman in March talking to the Pioneer Press about the site:

Next Up


2 dead, 1 with life-threatening injuries in Hwy. 7 crash

Both drivers were not wearing their seatbelt, according to the State Patrol.

Screen Shot 2022-09-25 at 11.50.33 AM

15-year-old Richfield football game shooting suspect arrested

A 16-year-old accused of instigating the altercation is also in custody.

Police tape

3 arrested after homicide, burglary in Inver Grove Heights

Charges of first-degree murder and first-degree burglary are pending.

fire, firefighter

Woman dies after becoming trapped in Waseca house fire

Police tried to enter the home but heavy smoke prevented them from getting inside.


1 dead, 2 with life-threatening injuries in Minnesota crash

The crash happened just after 7:30 p.m. Friday.

Image (1)

School bus carrying students plunges into river southwest of Fargo

None of the kids suffered life-threatening injuries, though some were taken to area hospitals.

Richfield High School

Richfield High School cancels weekend events after shooting

Two men were shot outside the school's football stadium

Screen Shot 2022-09-23 at 10.21.38 PM

Sound of shots, mass panic at Richfield football game streamed live on YouTube

Gunfire caused panic at a varsity football game Friday night.

J. Gordon

K-9 search leads to $36K fentanyl seizure during traffic stop

A traffic stop was made after the vehicle was seen speeding through the area.

Screen Shot 2022-09-23 at 5.20.08 PM

Gov. Walz reacts to Tuesday death of Mankato West student

The governor is a former geography teacher at the high school.