Another vacant superstore in Ohio has found new life, thanks to plastics.
Quality Blow Molding Inc. will move its warehouse and shipping operations to a shuttered Value City department store in Elyria, Ohio. President and owner Ron Matcham closed on the 110,000-square-foot building March 26.
The Value City, which has been empty for about a year, is a quarter mile away from Quality Blow Molding's headquarters plant.
I'm going to truck finished goods from here to [the Value City] and ship from there, Matcham said.
The industrial blow molding company runs 16 machines, making parts for automotive, lawn and garden, toys, appliances and other markets. Once the company relocates shipping, Matcham said he will use the extra room to expand blow molding operations.
I needed more space for manufacturing, and my lot was pretty much maxed out here. So it was easier and cheaper for me to buy that building than it was to add on to the factory for shipping, Matcham said.
It would be too expensive to relocate the entire blow molding factory to the Value City building, which would need a major investment for plastics manufacturing, he said. But the building is well-suited for warehouse space. A rail line runs by the Value City building, so a rail spur to the warehouse is possible, he said.
Matcham said Quality Blow Molding will use about 20,000 square feet of the 110,000-square-foot former Value City for warehouse and shipping. He plans to market the rest of the building for lease as retail space. An operating grocery store and a gas station are included in the property.
Value City Department Stores filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in 2008 and liquidated its stores.
The recession has left big retail stores sitting empty in many towns. In Ashland, Ohio, Hedstrom Plastics is moving its rotational molding factory there into a closed-down Wal-Mart, a 129,000-square-foot building left vacant in 2006 when a Wal-Mart Supercenter opened across town.
Hedstrom will move its headquarters into a smaller, unused JCPenney Co. Inc. store in the same retail strip mall.
In Elyria, the location and price made the old Value City attractive. I made a good buy and it made economic sense to purchase the building, as opposed to adding on to the existing building, Matcham said.
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