Royal Oak Barnes & Noble to close April 5

March 8, 2014

The downtown Royal Oak Barnes & Noble will close its doors April 5, nearly five months after a local software company announced it would move into the the bookstore’s second floor space with help from a $375,000 state incentive

The store has a sign out front confirming the date, along with announced sales on some items. It’s unclear how employees will be affected by the move, or if a liquidation is planned. A general manager deferred additional comments about the closure to Barnes & Noble HQ, which did not immediately return requests from Metro Times.

In December, Royal Oak-based software company Vectorform, announced it planned to hire 75 additional employees and move its headquarters across town to the bookstore’s location at Fifth and Main. The state incentive for the $2.24 million expansion stems from the Michigan Economic Development Corporation.

“It’s really a great coup to attract them as an office tenant downtown,” Royal Oak City Manager Don Johnson told  The Oakland Press last December. “They’re exactly the kind of firm we want. They’re bringing a lot of well-paid technical workers … the type of workers who will spend a lot of time in Royal Oak retail shops and Royal Oak restaurants.”

Barnes & Noble’s landlord reportedly told officials last year that the bookstore has paid reduced rent for over a year. The Royal Oak City Commission later approved Vectorform’s purchase of 15 parking spaces, and tossed in an additional 75 free parking spaces in nearby lots.

  • Jon Pickell

    What Royal Oak shops and restaurants? They’re all closed…

  • Unwelcome Guest

    Unpleasant Evening in Royal Oak

    You are eligible for a parking ticket in the city of Royal
    Oak even after paying to park in a public garage. I learned this the hard way
    in March of 2014 when I returned to my vehicle after a night on the town.
    Imagine my surprise at receiving a parking ticket on my window in a public garage
    that I had paid to park in.

    I have since learned
    that the city of Royal Oak makes it a priority to issue as many parking tickets
    as it can to fund the city due to declining property values. It’s sad to see a
    municipality so desperate for revenue. Don’t believe the hype about how great a
    place it is to visit. I doubt if I will ever feel the desire to return.