Not if, but when Denver gets CityTarget

News reports this week speculated Denver might be getting a new CityTarget store. Get used to seeing similar speculation in other major markets as the company seeks to tap a new growth frontier.

The Denver post this week reported that Target was eyeing downtown Denver locations for a new CityTarget store and cited three unnamed sources who said negotiations were under way. The one person who was quoted by the newspaper, Jim Kirchheimer, SVP the Downtown Denver Partnership, offered this convoluted assessment of discussions that may or may not be taking place: “I certainly can’t comment specifically on the conversations that may be taking place, but we’ve been talking, and the interest is mutual. We’d love to have a retailer of the caliber of Target in downtown Denver.”

Expect to see quotes of that nature with the name of different cities substituted for Denver a lot in the coming years. CityTarget’s will eventually arrive in every major market in the U.S. The company is hosting its annual meeting next week in a soon-to-open CityTarget in downtown Chicago and would hardly be calling attention to the format in such a high profile way if meaningful expansion weren’t a foregone conclusion.

Locations in Los Angeles, San Francisco, Seattle and Portland have already been identified so probably not a stretch to imagine virtually any major U.S. urban area popping up as a possible location.

As for Denver, The Post said a Target spokeswoman had no specific information about a new CityTarget store. Of course she didn’t. Retailers never confirm store locations until the ink is dry on the lease, even if everyone in town knows the store is coming. Commercial real estate folks have a tendency to leak information, especially concerning high value tenants such as Target whose presence can make properties more attractive.