Bargain hunters were bummed to learn that Burien’s Big Lots – located at 125 SW 148th Street (map below) – was “permanently closed” on Saturday, Jan. 4, 2020, according to signage on the front door.
Big Lots is a popular discount chain that sells a range of products, such as housewares, grocery items, furniture, holiday items and our personal favorite, Veggie Straws for just $1.90. They operate more than 1,400 stores in 47 states.
A District Trainer answered the phone at the store Monday morning, and he said that the company is currently looking for a new location in Burien. He wouldn’t tell us why this store was suddenly closed.
We also asked a worker at the store on Monday, and she said she wasn’t sure. However, she did reinforce the idea that they’re trying to find a new location in Burien.
“We periodically close stores,” was all that District Manager Sheila Marquis would tell us via telephone before telling us to call the corporate office.
According to Wikipedia:
“The Big Lots chain traces its history back to 1967 when Consolidated Stores Corporation was formed in Ohio by Sol Shenk. In 1982, Consolidated Stores Corp. opened its first closeout store, called Odd Lots, in Columbus, Ohio. In 1997, Big Lots Inc. bought out ‘MacFrugals’ (Pic ‘N’ Save) stores for $995 million in stock, eventually converting those to the Big Lots brand.”
According to King County Assessor records, this store is located in ‘Burien Square,’ which was built in 1966 and contains 34,650 square feet on a 113,955 s.f. lot. Big Lots shares the building with Big 5 Sporting Goods.
The shuttering of this Big Lots store is not really a big surprise though – a recent trip to the store during the holiday season showed indications of an imminent closing, with grocery aisles taped off, numerous empty shelves (“Where are my Veggie Straws!”) and plastic bins stacked up. It felt like we were in the middle of some kind of consumer zombie apocalypse, and when asked if they were closing, employees replied that they were just “re-merchandising.”