H&M will open in the current Eddie Bauer space, near the center of the mall and across from Bath & Body Works, according to Coral Ridge Mall’s senior general manager Monica Nadeau. Eddie Bauer will relocate across the hall, next to Sephora, in April, and the H&M is expected to open in fall.
The new store will serve as “a one-stop shopping destination for quality clothing for the whole family, with collections for ladies, men and teens, as well as separate ‘store within a store’ sections for accessories,” reads a press release from H&M. “The Coral Ridge Mall location will also carry the H&M Kids collection for newborns to 14 year olds.”
There are 4,500 H&Ms around the world, but this will be only the second location in Iowa. Davenport’s NorthPark Mall opened one in 2018.
The Sweden-based H&M, short for Hennes and Mauritz, is one of the largest clothing retailers in the world, and a purveyor of fast fashion — clothes and accessories manufactured and sold relatively quickly and inexpensively. This allows budget-conscious shoppers to hop on the latest fashion trends, but also leads to garments being discarded after just a few wears and washes, creating an environmental disaster.
While fast-fashion brands once dominated the market, American consumers have appeared to be pushing back on the business model. Forever 21, for example, filed for bankruptcy last year; locations around the world, including the store in Coral Ridge Mall, are expected to close.
H&M has publicly recognized the unsustainability of its industry, and pledged to become 100 percent “climate positive” by 2040 through the use of renewable energy and recyclable materials — moves that received tempered praise from ethical fashion industry watchdogs. The company began investing in a program to divert textiles from landfills in 2013.
Coralville’s H&M will likely have a 20-employee staff, and will begin hiring approximately a month before its opening. In the meantime, Coral Ridge Mall’s American Eagle will reopen Saturday after a remodel, and Tuesday Morning will debut next to PetSmart at the end of February, Nadeau said.