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CHICAGO (CBS) — The last Chicago Borders bookstore will close on Wednesday, but the bookstore chain’s loss may be the Chicago Public Schools’ gain.
Northbrook-based Hilco Trading LLC, which is handling the liquidation for the once-proud bookstore chain, said Saturday that it has donated about 8,000 “academic quality books” worth about $130,000 to Chicago’s schools.
Mayor Rahm Emanuel offered gratitude to Hilco at Schurz High School, 3601 N. Milwaukee Ave., along with Gov. Pat Quinn, U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin, and Chicago Public Schools chief executive officer Jean-Claude Brizard.
Hilco says in a news release that the donated books include titles covering mathematics, science, poetry, travels, hobbies, business, computer science, careers, politics, law, and Chicago history, among other subjects.
“We believe that education, above all other factors, is the foundation of commercial success and so we have decided to do what we can to help ensure American children receive the best education possible,” Hilco chief executive officer Jeffrey Hecktman said in a release.
Ann Arbor, Mich.-based Borders is closing all of its remaining 399 stores. This coming Wednesday will be the end of the road for the only remaining Chicago store, at 150 N. State St.
As recently as the beginning of this year, Borders operated eight Chicago stores, and several more in the suburbs. The oldest ones, at 830 N. Michigan Ave. on the Magnificent Mile and at 2817 N. Clark St. in the East Lakeview neighborhood, had been open for more than 15 years.
Many of the Borders stores, including the locations in the old Goldblatt’s building in Uptown and along the “Miracle Mile” of 95th Street in Beverly, were heralded as the catalysts for economic revitalization in their areas.
But all the city Borders locations except the State Street store, and most of the suburban locations, closed this spring when the company reorganized in Bankruptcy Court.
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