Menard’s still a possibility

BAZETTA – The old Walmart site on Elm Road may house a Menard’s home improvement store – though whether it is as soon as was hoped for remains to be seen.

According to Mike Mills, Bazetta zoning inspector, the privately-owned Wisconsin company has been in talks with Bazetta since last July. Originally, it was announced in October that the store’s construction, possibly a 245,300-square-foot building, would be under way by June.

“They put everything company-wide on hiatus when the fiscal cliff was approaching,” Mills said.

Nevertheless, Mills said he is “90 to 95 percent” sure that the store will still be coming to town, though as of yet the company has not requested any zoning permits.

Tom O’Neil, spokesman for Menard’s, said the land remains under contract with U.S. Properties, based in Hilliard. He said they are still investigating the area to make sure everything is set before building a store, but that he does not know the cause of delay from earlier predictions.

The possible new store will be roughly 5 miles away from its largest chain competitors – Lowe’s and Home Depot on Niles Cortland Road – and directly across the street from Grossman’s Bargain Outlet, a discount home improvement chain.

Walmart sold the Elm Road location to U.S. Properties Group in 2008 for $2.7 million when the company moved across the bypass to its current location on Millennium Drive.