Forever 21 planning six-story garage to deal with Lincoln Heights parking problems

Lincoln Heights -- Forever 21, the fast-fashion retailer that filed for bankruptcy last month, is moving its distribution and ecommerce operations to the Inland Empire, which means cutting 1,170 jobs at its Mission Road complex, reports the L.A. Business Journal.

The workers will be offered jobs at the new facility in Perris, which is more than 60 miles east of Lincoln Heights. The job cuts in Lincoln Heights will become permanent as of Jan. 20, 2020, the company said in a letter to the state Employment Development Department.

 "This is a normal course of business for Forever 21 as a larger part of our long term growth strategy, and has been in the works for over a year," a Forever 21 spokeswoman told the Business Journal.

Forever 21 has remained operating after its Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing, which protects it from creditors until it reorganizes operations and finances in court.

The firm has been struggling in recent years as it expanded rapidly into malls and storefronts around the world. That expansion took place as the brick-and-mortar outlets lost ground to online sales. The company in it's bankruptcy filing said it owes somewhere between $1 billion to $10 billion.

In addition to closing its Mission Road distribution center, Forever 21 said it will seek to close more than 340 of its approximately 800 stores with the permission of a judge that will oversee its Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing, reports the Washington Post.

The company has not said how the bankruptcy will impact its headquarters staff in Lincoln Heights, which opened seven years ago.

Forever 21's large staff and sleek buildings brought new life to a drab stretch of warehouses just east of Lincoln Park. But it's arrival also created a parking crunch that prompted the company to build a giant parking garage

Earlier this year, the discount fashion retailer sold its Lincoln Heights headquarters and warehouse for $166 million, according the L.A. Business Journal

The move to Lincoln Heights from Vernon in 2012 brought Forever 21 closer to its Eastside roots. 

The company’s first store, then known as Fashion 21, opened on Figueroa Street in Highland Park in April 1984

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