COEUR d’ALENE - After delaying its plans to expand into the Kootenai County market for a few years, WinCo, a Boise-based discount grocery chain, plans to construct a store next year at the intersection of Appleway and Ramsey in Coeur d’Alene, a developer said on Thursday.
“The plan is for construction to start in the spring with the opening in early 2014 or even at the end of 2013,” said Alan Johnson of Hughes Investments. “This will happen.”
WinCo will be the anchor tenant in a 17-acre retail center called The CrossRoads Coeur d’Alene at the northeast corner of the intersection.
“We’re really excited about it,” Johnson said. “It will be the first new project in Coeur d’Alene in quite awhile.”
New WinCo stores typically employ about 200 people, according to the company’s website.
Johnson said Hughes investments, Herb and Tony Zenetti, landowners who Hughes is buying 6 acres at the site from, and WinCo are cooperating on a land deal that will allow WinCo to be closer to the intersection. WinCo has been sitting on a 9-acre site adjacent to the nearby Lowe’s home improvement store for several years due to the recession and seeking the slight location change.
“This will put WinCo closer to Ramsey in the middle of the project rather than at the east end,” Johnson said, adding that WinCo will build its own store. “The real underlying reason (WinCo hasn’t started construction) is that it wants to be closer to Ramsey. And the Zenettis have been gracious people to work with.”
A WinCo spokesman did not return a message seeking comment on Thursday. The company’s website states that its staff does not comment of future locations early on in the expansion process.
Johnson said the plan calls for a variety of businesses to be both attached to WinCo and in separate buildings in the project. The entire project will have 142,854 square feet of building area at buildout, he said.
“We are in negotiations with several other users,” Johnson said, declining to elaborate but adding that retail shops, a bank, gas station and restaurants are options.
Johnson said he expects the real estate transactions enabling the project to be built will be completed in December.
Employee-owned WinCo has 82 stores in six Western states and employs more than 14,000. It has nine stores in Idaho and two in Spokane. The company started in 1967 under the name of Waremart before changing its name in 1999.
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