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20 new stores to open at Prime Outlets

March 09, 2000|By SCOTT BUTKI

Prime Outlets announced Thursday that L. L. Bean and Liz Claiborne are among 20 stores that will open at the Hagerstown outlet center in April.

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Most of the stores moving into the 97,980-square-foot Phase III building will open before the April 14 grand opening ceremony, Marketing Director Alice Rosen said.

A separate 66,169-square-foot building housing the Home Co. has been designated Phase IIIA.

With the opening of Phase III, the number of stores at Prime Outlets, off Sharpsburg Pike, will increase from 86 to at least 106.

The outlet mall, which owners project will draw an estimated 3 million people a year, has 86 stores in Phases I and II, Rosen said. In addition to the 20 stores confirmed for Phase III, one or two more stores, which she would not identify, are expected to commit later, Rosen said.

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A list of new stores was distributed during Thursday's "sneak peak" ceremony for the Home Co., a Dallas-based furniture chain owned by Prime Retail.

The grand opening for the store is to be held March 31.

More than 100 people who attended the invitation-only event toured the business and were treated to lunch. As they left they were given bags containing truffles, candles and other treats from Prime Outlets businesses, Rosen said.

Instead of reading the store names, Rosen sent those attending on a scavenger hunt through the Home Co. store, where they were to gather clues to figure out the names of the new businesses.

Rosen said she thought a scavenger hunt would be more fun, and would give the store more exposure, than would reading a list.

The Home Co. has three main goals: To offer the most comprehensive collection of quality home products, the best environment and the best value, Home Co. President Stephen K. McKee said.

Commissioners President Gregory I. Snook said Prime Outlets is a great asset for Washington County.

The Home Co. has created about 60 jobs, Prime Retail said.

The 218,000-square-foot Phase I opened Aug. 7, 1998, according to Prime Retail. Phase II, an additional 103,157 square feet, opened Nov. 20, 1998.

The first two phases created about 600 jobs and the third will create 200 more, according to a fact sheet from Prime Retail.

The Home Co. is leasing a 25,000-square-foot warehouse from the Boat America Corp. at 19224 Longmeadow Road so it can quickly ship its products, said Tom Riford, marketing director for the Hagerstown-Washington County Economic Development Commission.

Ten people will work at the center, Riford said.

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