Retailers planning to add new stores include Dollar General, Dollar Tree, Family Dollar, Aldi, Lidl, Five Below, and Hobby Lobby.
While many retailers are closing stores, some are rapidly building new locations, with at least one — Dollar General — adding as many as 900 stores this year.
A large majority of the retailers that are opening new stores this year are discounters, including Dollar General, Dollar Tree, Family Dollar, Aldi, Lidl, Five Below, and Hobby Lobby.
Those retailers and others will collectively open more than 2,100 stores this year, according to a Business Insider analysis based on company data.
In addition to adding 900 new stores, Dollar General plans to remodel 1,000 locations and relocate 100 stores.
Rival discounter Dollar Tree, which owns Family Dollar, expects to open "hundreds" of stores under each chain this year, a company spokesman told Business Insider. The company declined to provide an exact number until its next earnings release date in March, but it referenced its fiscal 2017 store growth — totaling 620 stores — for guidance.
The discount grocery chain Aldi, which operates 1,750 stores in 35 states, is planning to add another 180 stores this year as it works toward its goal of reaching 2,500 stores by 2022, the company said.
Aldi's biggest global competitor, Lidl, launched its first US stores last year and now has 48 locations across the East Coast. The company plans to open another 52 stores by June of this year, a spokesman told Business Insider.
Costco will open at least three new stores and Walmart plans up to 25 new locations that will include a mix of Neighborhood Market stores and Supercenters. However, Walmart's Sam's Club chain will close 63 stores, the company said Thursday.
Along with Sam's Club, many mall-based retailers including Sears, Kmart, Macy's, Rue21, Gymboree, and others are planning to close hundreds of stores.
US shoppers started gravitating toward discount stores during the recession, and most never returned to shopping full-price.
This shift coincided with a seismic change in how Americans spend their money. Shoppers are now devoting a smaller share of their wallets to clothing and accessories and instead spending more on big-ticket items like cars and travel, as well as food, technology, and health care.
Shoppers are also purchasing more online. At the same time, mall visits have dropped precipitously.
These changes have devastated full-price department stores like Macy's, JCPenney, and Sears, which have closed hundreds of stores in the past year.
The closure of full-price department stores has triggered a downward spiral in performance for many shopping malls, which has led to sales declines at specialty apparel and accessory stores located in mall centers, such as Gap, J.Crew, and Guess.