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Major Spartanburg Retailers to relocate

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I think is great. The current buldings that are to be replaced are in prominent locations, so these relocations will visually remove some of the empty boxes in Sparkle City. However, the net change in number will be zero if Best Buy and Lowes move from their westside locations.

Stores might move, rebuild in city

By By TERESA KILLAN | Staff Writer - Spartanburg Herald-Journal

More details are emerging on plans to bring two Lowe's and a Best Buy inside the city limits after neighborhood information meetings this week at the proposed sites -- the closed Wal-Mart on East Main Street and the empty Kmart on East Blackstock Road.

The east-side store would bring a second Lowe's to the city.

The west-side Lowe's would move from Peachwood Centre Drive to inside the city limits -- and closer to competitor Home Depot.

Best Buy may also build a new store on the former Kmart property.

"We are certainly thrilled to have (the redevelopment) happen and thrilled to have it happen with a quality company," City Manager Mark Scott said.

The site plans for the projects must be reviewed at neighborhood meetings and community forums that could be held as early as April 15. City staff will consider any concerns that are raised before issuing building permits.

If the process moves smoothly and plans are not changed or withdrawn, demolition could begin as early as late April or May. New stores could open within the year, according to information presented at the neighborhood meetings.

Suggestions ranged from requests to extend sidewalks further to increasing landscaping.

At the east Spartanburg location, the former Wal-Mart side of the shopping center would be demolished to make way for a more than 116,000-square-foot Lowe's.

Existing stores in the shopping center -- including SuperCuts, Friedman Jewelers, Subway and Scrapbook Creations -- will all be moving to other locations, including new retail centers being built at the nearby Wal-Mart Supercenter.

The new building would shift closer to the road to create space in back for a receiving area.

On the west side of the city, the former Kmart would be demolished to make way for Lowe's. The size of the current design is about 135,000 square feet, said Gene Hinkle, project manager with Freeland & Kauffman.

The proposed site plan shows dozens of trees such as elms and maples in the parking lot.

Lowe's and Best Buy currently operate stores near each other on the west side near Highway 29 -- outside the city limits.

If the stores moved to a new site, Hull Storey Retails Group would work to attract new occupants for the current Lowe's property, said Kendal Jones, vide president for development for the group.

Best Buy already is conducting market research on the current property, said Travis Cinco, property development manager with Best Buy.

The Lowe's announcements were good news for Terry and Virginia Farmer, who were shopping at Lowe's on Thursday.

They have driven several times a week from east Spartanburg to the store, and estimated they could have saved at least an hour in the car each week had there been a closer Lowe's.

"We're in the midst of remodeling the whole house," Terry Farmer said.

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