L.L. Bean, the Freeport-based outdoors retail company, announced it will close its Bangor call center in May 2016, a decision that will affect the 220 employees who work there.

Spokeswoman Carolyn Beem said the affected employees were notified Wednesday of the company’s decision. Those employees, the majority of whom are year-round, part-time workers, will be offered opportunities to work in other areas of the company or at home.

“We wanted to give those employees as long a lead time as possible so that they can plan their lives. We are hoping to retain as many of those employees as we can,” Beem said Wednesday evening. “We appreciate the workforce in Bangor. They are highly engaged and satisfied employees.”

The company, which was founded in 1912 by Leon Leonwood Bean, handles mail-order, online and retail orders – much of which is generated by L.L. Bean catalogs.

The Bangor call center, which opened in 2005, occupies space owned by the city of Bangor. It is at Maine Avenue and Godfrey Boulevard, near the Bangor International Jetport. Beem said the current lease expires in May 2015. L.L. Bean is working with the city to extend the lease by one year.

Beem said the decision to close the Bangor call center comes at a time when the company is seeing a reduction in the number of telephone orders and an increase in the number of online orders.

The decision to close the Bangor call center will not affect the company’s call centers in Portland at the Northport shopping plaza off Washington Avenue or at its call center in Lewiston in the Peck Building on Main Street.

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