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Chapters store at Richmond & John to close May 30

It’s the end of an era for another bookstore in Toronto.

Parent company Indigo Books & Music Inc. has confirmed it will be closing its store at John and Richmond streets as of May 30.

“After lengthy negotiations, we have made the difficult decision not to renew our lease for Chapters Festival Hall,” Janet Eger, vice-president of public affairs at Indigo, said in a emailed statement.

Egar said the company is “actively looking for new real estate options in Oakville, downtown Toronto and Bloor West Village” that will better suit its needs.

She also said Indigo will help its employees through the transition process.

It’s not yet known what will be built at the location.

The Chapters store, which opened on July 15, 1999, is located beneath the Scotiabank Theatre in the city’s downtown’s core near the busy Queen Street West and across from the iconic MuchMusic building, now owned by CTV.

The store is part of the RioCan Hall entertainment complex, originally called Festival Hall, which also houses the Famous Players Paramount movie multiplex.

Other bookstore closures in Toronto

The latest news comes in a string of bookstore closures in the city.

The Chapters location on Runnymede Street in Bloor West Village — formerly home to the Runnymede Theatre — closed in February, to be converted into a Shoppers Drug Mart store.

Indigo-owned World’s Biggest Bookstore — located near Yonge-Dundas Square, covering 64,000 square feet and rows of bookshelves — closed just two days ago. It was in operation since 1980. Paracom Realty Corporation, the property’s listing/leasing broker, said it will be opening a row of four restaurants in the fall of 2015.

In 2012, the non-profit Toronto Women’s Bookstore, located near Harbord Street and Spadina Avenue, closed after a 39-year run. Also that year, the city’s oldest independent bookstore, The Book Mark, located on Bloor Street West, also shut its doors. Both closures were due to costly rent prices.

Independent bookstore Nicholas Hoare, located near Church and Front Streets, closed in April 2013 after being in business since 1989. The storeowner, Hoare, decided to retire and move his family to Nova Scotia.

Other bookstores that have closed include Book City in the Annex, Ballenford Books on Markham Street, Pages on Queen Street West, and The Cookbook Store on Yonge south of Bloor.

Are you sad to see the Chapters bookstore close? What do you think should be built in its place? Share your comments in the space below.

With files from Toronto Staff