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Target Seeks Improvements At Site Of Future Store

Several site improvements are being sought by Target in efforts to turn the former Kmart in West Ellicott into a 117,000-square-foot retail store.

Those improvements were briefly noted in a site plan application submitted to the Ellicott Town Zoning and Planning Board and which will be discussed during a public hearing later this month.

In addition to general repairs to the parking lot and sidewalks outside the former Kmart store on Fairmount Avenue, Target said it’s looking to add 24 “drive-up stalls” along the west side of the building. Stalls are used for customers who purchase items online and pick them up at the store.

Target also seeks to modify how vehicles enter the plaza — already home to Home Depot and Wegmans — off Southwestern Drive, going from a “driveway entrance” to “full access.” Modification off Southwestern would require approval from the county.

Other site improvements eyed include “updated building signage, landscaping and maintenance of existing stormwater basin vegetation,” Target said in its site plan revision application.

Members of the town Zoning and Planning Board meet at 6 p.m. on Thursday, March 17. Another application not tied to the Target project also is scheduled for discussion during the public hearing.

Target confirmed in November of last year it planned to open a new store at the former Kmart location at 975 Fairmount Ave. in West Ellicott.

A planned opening date hasn’t been announced, and it’s not known how many workers the store will employ.

“We’re excited to bring an easy, safe and convenient shopping experience to new guests in this community with this new Target store,” a Target spokesperson said last November, later adding, “as we get closer to opening the store, we’ll have more specific details to share — including how the shopping experience will be tailored to serve local guests and the grand opening date.”

Kmart closed its longtime West Ellicott store in 2019.

Once open, Target’s entry into Chautauqua County will come with one of the bigger stores in the company’s aggressive expansion push. During its annual investor meeting in New York City, Target officials discussed the company’s plan to open 30 new stores ranging from midsize locations in dense suburban areas to small stores in cities like Charleston, South Carolina. The company’s typical store size had been 144,000 square feet, but over the past few years Target has designed new stores as small as 15,000 square feet.

The former Kmart location in West Ellicott is a 117,360-square-foot building.

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