DANVERS — Months before Seattle-based retailer Nordstrom Inc. sets up shop at the Northshore Mall, you will be able to head to Danvers to browse the racks of its off-price division, Nordstrom Rack.
Nordstrom plans to open its first off-price store in the region this fall in nearly an acre of space formerly occupied by the Stop & Shop supermarket at the Liberty Tree Mall.
It's Nordstrom's first foray into the Boston area with its Rack concept.
"The Nordstrom Rack is our off-price division," spokeswoman Nichole Shell said. The store will sell women's, men's and children's apparel and shoes and items for the home at 30 to 75 percent off, Shell said.
The Rack stores carry off-price merchandise from full-line Nordstrom stores, special purchase items and merchandise from the outfit's online operation. It is similar to Saks Off Fifth outlets.
It differs in service from a traditional Nordstrom, which won't open in Peabody until the spring of 2009.
"It's a self-service store," Shell said. "A customer can go in and choose what they want, while at the full-line stores, you have associates walking you through the shopping experience."
The move will also bring with it a number of jobs.
"We expect we will hire at least 70 people in the communities," said Shell, who could not say what the pay range will be.
Nordstrom has 157 stores in 28 states, including 50 Nordstrom Rack stores, but it is just now moving into the North Shore. It opened its first full store in Massachusetts at the Natick Collection last year and plans to open a store at the Burlington Mall on March 28.
Nordstrom Rack will fill a portion of the space at 50 Independence Way left by the Stop & Shop when it closed in the first week of January. The other tenant with Nordstrom Rack will be Off Broadway Shoe Warehouse, according to a spokesman for Stop & Shop, Robert Keane. An official for Off Broadway Shoe Warehouse could not be reached yesterday.
Nordstrom Rack will join other retailers at the Liberty Tree Mall, including Kohl's, Target, Marshalls, Old Navy, Pier 1 Imports and Best Buy.
The 42,500-square-foot space Nordstrom Rack will occupy does not include the portion of the mall run by Simon Property Group. Instead, the future home of Nordstrom Rack used to be part of an Ann & Hope department store and garden center before developers demolished it in 2003.
The developer, Eastern Development LLC of Woburn, created big-box condominiums at the Ann & Hope site, and Kohl's now occupies one of those, said Marlene Locke, Danvers' chief assessor. Stop & Shop and Pier I Imports shared a 91,854-square-foot space assessed in town records at $11,085,200.
Stop & Shop leases the space from Eastern Development, a privately held investment and development firm. An official of the company declined comment.