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Deja Vu Rack of Lemont to close, cites Goodwill store as reason for decline in business

Published: Wednesday, Dec. 11, 2013 3:02 p.m. CDT

LEMONT – After three years in business, the Deja Vu Rack, 1243 State St., Lemont, will shut its doors Dec. 21.

Owner Kim Cochrane said sales had been declining at the consignment boutique since the Goodwill Store and Donation Center opened down the street earlier this year.

She said her store had seen steady increase in sales during the first two years and she was anticipating her first profit this year before the Goodwill store opened.

"You can't compete with their cheap prices," Cochrane said. "Everything they get is donated. They take anything."

She said she is more selective about the quality of the items she accepts.

Cochrane said Wise Buys, a resale shop in Homer Glen, has closed since the Goodwill store opened as well.

Ron Nalepa, manager of the Second Chance Thrift Shoppe in downtown Lemont, said his store has also seen a decline in sales since Goodwill opened.

A representative from Goodwill was not immediately available for comment.

Cochrane said she was frustrated that the village allowed the larger Goodwill store to open in Lemont.

"When I found out they were coming, I called (Lemont Mayor Brian Reaves) and asked 'Why would you do this? Why would you let this big box store come in?" she said.

Reaves said the village has no control over what businesses open in commercial spaces as long as they meet all the building and zoning requirements.

"The Village Board of Trustees does not vote on individual businesses coming to town," he said.

Reaves said he was sad to see the store close.

"As mayor of Lemont, it always troubles me when any business has to close in town," he said. "We always as a village struggle to keep businesses and are continuously promoting to people to shop in Lemont."

Cochrane said she has no plans to open a new store in another town because she does not think she can compete with the big box stores.

"I have had a loyal following and I'm grateful for those that did shop in my store," she said. "I just wish more would have."

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