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Familiar-name stores to open mall locations

The entryway to the 30,000-square-foot Linens ?n Things is taking shape at the Rogue Valley Mall. That store and a Talbots clothing store are two new options customers can expect by spring. / Jim Craven — — — —

For Susan Beck, Talbots coming to the mall is exciting news.

It's quality and a little bit nicer, said the Grants Pass resident who has shopped at the Talbots women's clothing store in Eugene.

It's a little bit upper scale.

Talbots, which is scheduled to open its 4,500-square-foot space by April 1, is one of several new retail businesses coming to Medford's Rogue Valley Mall.

Probably every other month we're opening something, said Jeff Barber, mall general manager.

He said it's a big deal for Medford to get a Talbots. A store usually found in larger cities, it'll provide local shoppers with more choices in classic professional women's clothing.

Another addition is Linens 'n Things, which will occupy the space where Movies 5 used to be. The entryway will jut out into the parking lot and is now under construction, Barber said.

The 30,000-square-foot store will offer anything to do with everything in your house, said Barber. Not necessarily furniture, but all the other stuff.

Lisa Smith of Medford said she shops at the mall almost weekly, and even though she is not familiar with Talbots or Linens 'n Things, she likely will shop in both ' especially Linens 'n Things.

There really isn't a store like that except the Meier & Frank Home Store, she said.

Charles Bench of Shady Cove was less enthusiastic about the new stores.

They're not going to affect me, said the father of two children.

I just come (to the mall) around the holidays, he explained. We like the toy store and the kids clothing store.

Barber said there are about 100 stores in the mall. He anticipates the stores will do well in their new homes.

Every national tenant we've had has been extremely successful, he said.

Wet Seal, a mall-based specialty retailer of young women's apparel, opened a 3,205-square-foot space on the mall's upper level about six weeks ago, Barber said.

Also planned for the mall is Electronics Boutique, which sells computer software, accessories and video game systems.

Barber said he's hoping to get other national quality clothing companies to come in.

One of the ones we really want is Anne Taylor, he said. We'd love to get Anne Taylor, Banana Republic, those types.

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Reach reporter Meg Landers at 776-4481 or e-mail