A.C. Moore Arts and Crafts, the Berlin-based 136-store national retailer, is scaling back its construction plans based on the tough retail climate.

It will open fewer stores, close more stores and forgo the construction of a second distribution center, instead focusing on the expansion of its Berlin property.

Instead of opening 14 stores, as previously announced, it will open between 8 to 12 this year, picking locations where there is enough density to provide efficiencies in advertising and distribution.

The company plans to close seven to 10 stores, a large number compared to previous years. It closed two in 2007 and one in 2006.

A.C. Moore expects the store closings to cost $7 million to $9 million, including $4 million to $5 million related to leases and $1 million to $2 million for severance and liquidation costs.

The current real estate market may also provide some opportunity, the company said, as it looks to relocate stores to more advantageous locations.

Contact staff writer Jane M. Von Bergen at 215-854-2769 or jvonbergen@phillynews.com.