Brown Deer — Kohl's is planning to open one of its discount Kohl's Off/Aisle stores in a space previously occupied by a traditional Kohl's department store in the Brown Deer Marketplace shopping center.

Kohl's closed its Brown Deer store at 9060 N. Green Bay Road in June due to low sales. The Kohl's in Brown Deer was the only Wisconsin store to close during an 18-store downsizing by the company. At the time, Kohl's said it planned to pilot seven smaller-format stores throughout the country, add two more Off/Aisle pilot stores in Wisconsin and open 12 Fila outlets.

Kohl's already has Off/Aisle stores in Waukesha and at the Mayfair Collection in Wauwatosa. The proposed Brown Deer store would occupy 18,000 square feet of the 64,000-square-foot space. The remaining 46,000 square feet of space will be used to store seasonal merchandise and seasonal fixtures. Walls would be raised to separate the retail store from the storage space.

The Brown Deer Plan Commission will consider on Feb. 13 whether it approves of Kohl's Off Aisle's plan to use two-thirds of the space for storage, even though the property is zoned for retail use. If the plan commission approves the proposal, Kohl's plans to open the Off/Aisle store in summer.

Nate Piotrowski, the village's community development director, said he views the opportunity as a positive because it fills a large, vacant storefront. He said Kohl's was a popular store in Brown Deer, and he expects a similar level of excitement for the new Off/Aisle brand.

The Brown Deer Marketplace will also see some new activity soon when Bob's Discount Furniture opens Feb. 16 in the space previously occupied by hhgregg, which closed its five Wisconsin stores in October. This is the company's first store in Wisconsin.

Elsewhere in the shopping center, a Rainbow clothing store will fill the space previously occupied by Party City, which filled the space left vacant by the closing of Anna's Linens.

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