CEDAR FALLS -- A cornerstone department store in College Square Mall will be closing in the next few months.

Bon-Ton Stores, which operates Younkers as well as Bon-Ton, Elder-Beerman, Carson's, Herberger's and Boston Store in 24 states, announced Wednesday 47 stores under their umbrella would close in 2018.

The Younkers in Cedar Falls is one of two stores in Iowa that will close; the other is the Younkers in Westdale Mall in Cedar Rapids.

All of the locations will begin closing sales on Feb. 1 and be closed 10 to 12 weeks after that, Bon-Ton Stores announced Wednesday.

"We remain focused on executing our key initiatives to drive improved performance in an effort to strengthen our capital structure to support the business going forward," said Bon-Ton president and CEO Bill Tracy in a statement Wednesday. "We would like to thank the loyal customers who have shopped at these locations and express deep gratitude to our team of hard-working associates for their commitment to Bon-Ton and to serving our customers."

A manager answering the phone at Younkers in Cedar Falls on Wednesday directed all questions to Christine Hojnacki, a spokesperson for Bon-Ton.

Hojnacki told The Courier in an email that 39 people are employed at Younkers in Cedar Falls and the store would close within three months.

The Younkers in Crossroads Mall in Waterloo will remain open.

That leaves Von Maur as the lone department store in College Square Mall, according to the Mall's store listings.

Shares of Bon-Ton were down a penny, to 16 cents, on Wednesday. The stock was trading at $1.25 on Feb. 1 of last year.