Warren Mayor Fouts: Art Van closure is 'devastating,' founder would be 'turning over in his grave'

Commission to look at recall petitions filed against Warren Mayor Jim Fouts
Posted at 3:14 PM, Mar 05, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-05 15:15:50-05

WARREN, Mich. (WXYZ) — Warren Mayor Jim Fouts is not happy about the news that Art Van Furniture is suddenly closing. Fouts posted on Facebook that the news was "devastating."

The furniture company is headquarted in Warren, and announced Thursday it was closing all of its stores with going-out-of-business sales starting Friday.

Fouts blamed the company that bought Art Van, and said the company is worth over $66 million in Warren.

"I'm going to reach out to Governor Whitmer and all of the potential candidates for President to see what they might to do to prevent this in the future and requesting Governor Whitmer to consider intervening (if possible) to force this investment company to honor their commitment to the workers and taxpayers," he wrote.

According to Fouts, they are also working to find a future company to take over the site where Art Van is currently headquarted on 14 Mile.

"Despite our best efforts to remain open, the Company's brands and operating performance have been hit hard by a challenging retail environment," said Diane Charles, Art Van Furniture spokesperson. "We recognize the extraordinary retail, community and philanthropic legacies that Art Van Furniture has built for decades in the community."

Art Van Elslander, opened his first furniture store in metro Detroit in 1959, growing it to the number one furniture and mattress retailer in the Midwest.

"Art Van would likely be turning over in his grave due to this outrageous chain of events," Fouts wrote.