DeKalb Blockbuster plans liquidation sale

DeKALB — It's the end of an era as the last DeKalb Blockbuster is gearing up for an end-of-business liquidation sale.

Signs advertising the planned Nov. 14 sale were displayed all over the store windows at 2350 Sycamore Road on Tuesday. All inventory will be for sale.

Dish Network, Blockbuster's parent company, announced last week that it plans to close all of its remaining 300 retail locations.

Blockbuster, which had more than 9,000 stores and almost $6 billion in revenue at its peak in 2004, will be all but gone from the retail landscape. About 50 locations owned by franchisees will remain open.

Roger Hopkins, economic development consultant for the city of DeKalb, said it was likely that the storefront would remain vacant through the winter.

"It won't be open in time for the holiday season," he said. "Openings might be geared toward March or August of next year, or as late as September or October. Depending on the target audience, businesses might open for back-to-school in July or August."

Hopkins said it was too soon to tell what kind of interest the vacant property would draw.

The storefront is in a high-visibility location facing Sycamore Road, and the city will target full-service restaurants and clothing stores for the space, Hopkins said. DeKalb offers a retail sales tax rebate program which rebates businesses up to 50 percent of the sales tax for up to seven years.

"That's been the one shopping center in DeKalb that has been here for as long as anybody could remember," Hopkins said. "You get excellent exposure, and it's beneficial to be co-tenants to be in the same shopping area as Walmart, Kohl's and Best Buy."

Blockbuster customers who have rented materials from the store are asked to turn in their rented items in the drop box on the day printed on their receipt.