- Nike announced it is building a new flagship store in New York’s famed 5th Ave shopping district.
- That also means it’s leaving the space currently occupied by Niketown on East 57th Street, which is managed by the Trump Organization.
- A new report says the Trump management was a factor in the decision.
Niketown New York is packing it in.
Nike announced the five-floor store is closing next spring in preparation for Nike’s new store, just five blocks down 5th Ave, in 2019.
Niketown was opened as a virtual Willy Wonka of shoes, with pneumatic tubes shooting product all over the store. It’s also the Trump Organization’s biggest tenant in a single space, with Nike leasing the 65,000 square feet of space. Forbes estimates that the propriety is worth $235 million.
Trump also owns the Trump Tower, which is around the block with high-profile tenants like Tiffany and Gucci.
Nike’s move is likely predominately motivated by a change in its strategy, which is now focused on more experimental and modern conveniences that the aging store could provide. While there are a lot of floors and square footage, the floors are set up in such a way that it would be difficult to reconfigure.
The space in the new Nike store “gives us more opportunities to play with new concepts than we have now,” Nike spokesperson Ilana Finley told Forbes.
Think of it more along the lines of the new Nike Soho store, which has places to run, play soccer, and even a near-half basketball court to shoot hoops.
Two anonymous Nike employees told Forbes that these space issues at Niketown were the biggest reason for the move, while the association with Trump’s brand was only “a factor, to some degree.”