• FILE- In this July 30, 1996, file photo, a woman pushes a shopping cart over a graphic of Toys R Us mascot Geoffrey the giraffe at the Toys R Us store in Raritan, N.J. Toys R Us CEO David Brandon told employees Wednesday, March 14, 2018, that the company's plan is to liquidate all of its U.S. stores, according to an audio recording of the meeting obtained by The Associated Press. (AP Photo/Daniel Hulshizer, File) Photo: Daniel Hulshizer, STR / Associated Press / Copyright 2018 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.

Toys R Us will close 18 stores in the Houston area, putting 673,000 square feet of retail space on the market.

It’s a lot of space to hit the market at once — the equivalent of a small mall or several department stores. The retail space vacated by Toys R Us would be slightly bigger than the megachurch campus of Lakewood Church.

“It’s significant,” Ed Wulfe, president and CEO of Wulfe and Co., said. “Fortunately, it’s distributed across the whole city in proven retail locations.”

Toys R Us is not the first major retailer close this much space in Houston, Wulfe said. The longtime retail broker and developer pointed to examples such as Venture Stores, Phar-Mor and Circuit City.

“This is not…