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Lowe's to bring 100 jobs to W.Va.

January 08, 1998


Staff Writer, Martinsburg

MARTINSBURG, W.Va. - A new Lowe's Home Improvement Warehouse will create almost 100 jobs, according to developer Bruce Van Wyk.

The Martinsburg Planning Commission Wednesday night approved a site plan for the project on more than 20 acres off W.Va. 45 that was annexed by the city last month. The approval was contingent on more landscaping for a residential area on nearby Old Arden Road.

"Lowe's put an enormous amount of landscaping" into the site plan, but agreed to more to satisfy the concerns of the commission, Van Wyk said Thursday. He said the stormwater management plan must also get final approval from the city's consulting engineer.

City Engineer Mike Covell said Lowe's has agreed not to use Old Arden Road for delivery trucks or customers, addressing traffic concerns raised by residents last year.


The site plan calls for a 129,044-square-foot building, including 115,506 square feet of sales floor space. There will be an additional garden center measuring almost 50,000 square feet and 655 parking spaces.

"I expect that we'll be closing next week," Van Wyk said of the sale of the land. The North Wilkesboro, N.C., hardware giant will buy the land through Van Wyk Enterprises from the Oates Partnership.

It was Van Wyk who ap-proached the city in September about annexing the land for a then-unnamed retail development project.

"Our projects generally cost $15 million to $18 million," said Clarissa Felts, Lowe's director of media relations, including land acquisition, building costs and inventory.

Brian Peace, another company official, said construction generally takes about six months from site preparation to opening day. According to Van Wyk, there are 106 employees at the existing Lowe's hardware center, at 1130 Winchester Ave., and the new home improvement warehouse should mean a net gain of 94 jobs.

Peace said the home improvement warehouses generally employ 200 people, "80 percent of which are full-time jobs."

The new Lowe's will be on the city's south end on land bordered by Windewald Boulevard, W.Va. 45, Old Arden Road and the Winchester and Western Railroad tracks.

"We are in the broadest expansion program in our 51-year history," Felts said. The company has 443 stores and expects to have 600 in the year 2000, she said.

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