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SHELTON, CT–Retailer Hawley Lane Shoes has inked a 23,000-sf sublease deal at 898 Bridgeport Ave. here. The deal with sublandlord Stop & Shop is for a portion of what once was a Bradlee’s department store. Bed Bath & Beyond has a sublease for 25,000 sf of space at the property. The remaining 22,000 sf of space there remains vacant.

Hawley Lane will shut down its 5,000-sf Trumbull store at the Hawley Lane Mall by the spring of 2006 and relocate its operations there into the subleased space. Company officials say its new location will be one of the largest shoe stores in the country.

David Levy, vice president of Hawley Lane Shoes, says the much larger store will allow the firm, which offers more than 200 brands for men, women and children, to establish an orthopedic department as well as a custom children’s shoe section.

The company, which operates a shoe retail website at www.comfortshoes.com, also has a 5,000-sf store in Norwalk at 499 Westport Ave., which opened in 2000, and a 2,200-sf store in Stamford at 73 High Ridge Rd., which opened in 2003. Hawley Lane began operations in 1975 and its principals have been in the shoe business since 1929.

Dominick Musilli, senior vice president of GVA Williams of Stamford, represented Hawley Lane. Hugh Kelly and Lee Ferrucci of Staubach Retail Services represented Stop & Shop.

Levy says the company currently employs 40 at its three retail locations. It plans to initially operate the new store with 40 workers. However, it hopes to ramp up the workforce there to about 100 within three years, he adds.

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