Microsoft Corp. finally has confirmed what has been known for a long time in the Salt Lake City retail community — it plans to open a retail store in City Creek Center.
The company acknowledged the move this week on its official blog.
"We’re thrilled to ring in the New Year by announcing the locations of our first new store locations for 2013," Jonathan Adashek, Microsoft’s general manager of communications and strategy, said in the blog.
In addition to City Creek, Adashek said Microsoft will be opening stores this year in San Antonio, Miami, San Francisco, St. Louis and Beachwood, Ohio.
Although representatives from City Creek and Microsoft had previously declined to acknowledge their plans, The Tribune reported in mid-July that Microsoft had requested a building permit for a $300,000 structure in an unoccupied space at the downtown Salt Lake City shopping complex.
Microsoft spokeswoman Nikki Barker said Thursday that the company is not ready to announce an opening date for the Utah store, but she indicated it would be in Regent Court area, which is on the east side of City Creek Center near the Food Court.
"When we look at real estate options, we evaluate mall traffic patterns in high-performing shopping centers. We choose store locations that best match our customers’ needs and shopping habits," she said, indicating that City Creek is a "top-notch shopping destination" that also meets Microsoft’s needs.
The announcement of the Utah store and five additional locations planned for 2013 will bring to 37 the number of full-line Microsoft stores. They sell software, such as Microsoft’s flagship Windows operating system, as well as PCs and other hardware from third-party providers.
The Microsoft store will be the second major electronics retailer to open in City Creek. Earlier this fall, Apple moved its downtown Salt Lake City store from The Gateway to City Creek.
In selecting City Creek for one of its stores, Microsoft appears to be following a larger strategy of placing its retail outlets in the same malls and shopping centers where Apple already operates. The Apple Store is on the western side of the mall near Nordstrom.
City Creek center General Manager Linda Wardell declined to comment on Microsoft’s announcement and would not state when, if ever, the mall will be ready to confirm Microsoft is one of its tenants.
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