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Lubbock is losing a major retailer from the popular West End Shopping Center (2910 W Loop 289 Acc Rd,).

The shopping center, while relatively new, has already seen some shake-ups and change-ups, including the quiet closing of the Converse store and the opening up of a Five Below location, which brought joy to my bargain hunter's heart.

The Banana Republic Factory store will have its last day ever on Tuesday, January 24th, and currently has nothing but clearance at an additional 70%, according to the very friendly associate who answered my call this morning. I hope she has a great job lined up, she deserves it.

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Full disclosure: I never stepped foot into that store. I suppose I forgot it was there. Coincidentally, I am wearing a Banana Republic sweater as I'm typing this- that I bought online. So I am a likely partial culprit to the brick-and-mortar store's demise. Online shopping is a convenient, passive, and no-pressure way to shop. Many brick-and-mortar stores have adapted to allow returns and exchanges of items bought online at their retail stores, but as this was a "factory" store, that wasn't allowed.

I truly feel that brick-and-mortar stores are important and I'll take this reminder to frequent them more. It's difficult to tell sizing online, or even the quality of the material it's made from. As much as I despise trying on clothes, I know I ought to do it to ensure a good fit.

What should go in the soon-to-be vacant Banana Republic store? If I get a say, can I formally request a Nordstrom Rack? Again, that's the bargain hunter in me.

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