GRANDVILLE, Mich. (WOOD) - Cabela's, the Nebraska-based outfitter known for their elaborate displays and unique merchandise, announced Thursday that it plans to build a store in Grandville.
The new store will be at the former X-Rite site on the southeast corner of 44th Street and Ivanrest Avenue in Grandville. It is part of a larger retail development, which includes a Target already under construction.
"It is pretty cool. Yeah, we're excited," said Scott Wierda with CWD, the developers of the project.
The Cabela's construction will begin this summer. The store's grand opening is expected for spring 2013.
It is not the company's first attempt to locate on the west side of the state. In 2006, the company revealed plans for a large scale store in Walker. The Walker location was a cornfield along Walker Avenue near I-96.
In the end, the cost of infrastructure improvements -- like roads, water and sewer lines -- and the economic downturn killed that plan.
This project is doesn't have those obstacles.
"Those costs are in and they've been paid for by the development, as opposed to residents," Grandville City Manager Ken Krombeen told 24 Hour News 8.
And Krombeen said that much of the insfrastructure is already in place, which makes the location an attractive retail property.
"The road infrastructure is in, and has been successful in accommodating 15 million visitors to the area each and every year for the past decade. The water and sewer utilities are there. So it just purely is a matter of constructing a store on the site," Krombeen said.
Cabela's stores showcase thousands of products, including hunting, fishing, camping, hiking, boating and wildlife-watching gear, as well as clothing and outdoor-themed gifts and furnishings.
The company didn't just shoot and arrow at a map and come up with the Grandville location.
"When they started looking at the area, they were always looking at the number of fisherman and outdoorsman and hunters, boating licenses, a lot of things that said their customer is here and spending money," said Wierda.
The proposed Grandville store is part of a new concept for the retailer. It will feature the same attractions and merchandise, but in a smaller store.
This will be Cabela's second retail store in Michigan. The only current Michigan Cabela's location in Dundee, measures 225,000 square feet.
The Grandville location will be around 88,000 square feet, or 39% the size of the traditional Cabela's megastore.
For a local comparisons, the Grandville Meijer comes in at close to 193,000 square feet.
"It allows it to fit in a lot more different retail corridors," said Wierda.
The Grandville store, which is expected to employ about 200 full- and part-time employees, will also feature a boat shop, gun library, bargain cave and fudge shop.
"The interior will be designed to immerse customers in an outdoor-like experience with conservation-themed wildlife displays and trophy animal mounts displayed on a mountain with a built-in aquarium. Featuring Cabela's next-generation layout, the store will offer a wide range of outdoor products, as well as Cabela's popular In-Store Pickup, which allows customers to order any Cabela's merchandise delivered to a Cabela's store free of delivery charges," according to a news release.
"Because of the many great customers we have in the Grandville/Grand Rapids area, we have been interested in building a store there for years," said Cabela's CEO Tommy Millner. "Michiganders are dedicated outdoorspeople who live the Cabela's lifestyle and so many of them are loyal customers through our catalogs, website and Dundee store, we wanted to reward them with a Cabela's store of their own."
Cabela's is based in Sidney, Neb. It has also announced plans to build stores in Wichita, Kan.; Tulalip, Wash.; Rogers, Ark.; Charleston, W.Va.; Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada; and Union Gap, Wash., all expected to open in 2012. Cabela's also plans to open stores in Columbus, Ohio, and Louisville, Ky., in 2013.
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