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Payless ShoeSource closing five local stores

Payless ShoeSource will "immediately" close nearly 400 shoe stores across the country, five of them in Erie and Niagara counties.

The affected stores are located at:

  • Mid-City Plaza, 301 Meadow Drive in North Tonawanda
  • 5999 South Park Ave. in Hamburg
  • Aurora Village Shopping Center, 123 Grey St. in East Aurora
  • Eastgate Plaza, 5049 Transit Road in Amherst
  • Eastern Hills Mall, 4545 Transit Road in Clarence

The Kansas-based chain has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection and said the closures were part of the company's reorganization plan. The company was founded in 1956 and has more than 4,400 stores in more than 30 countries.

In a statement, Payless CEO Paul Jones called the closures a "difficult, but necessary, decision driven by the continued challenges of the retail environment, which will only intensify."

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