Biz Buzz: Second business unveiled for former J.C. Penney in Baxter
A HomeGoods store is moving into the smaller of the two spaces. the larger space will also have a familiar name joining the lakes area's retail draw.
BAXTER — Permits filed with the city of Baxter revealed the name for the larger of two tenants moving into the former J.C. Penney building.
The new tenant taking over two-thirds of the building is a name that has been broached in the lakes area’s micropolitan before. But now it is official: Hobby Lobby Stores Inc. plans to take over the majority of the building vacated when J.C. Penney closed a host of stores.
The building permit before the city is to renovate the interior space for Hobby Lobby. The construction project has a value of $2,752,689.
As previously reported, a HomeGoods store is moving into the smaller of the two spaces.
J.C. Penney announced the store with its building plans submitted to the city of Baxter in late summer of 2007. Those plans called for a one-story, 83,000-square-foot building near the corner of Highway 371 and Glory Road by the Walmart Supercenter.
At the time, there had been a long-standing rumor that J.C. Penney — then an anchor tenant at the East Brainerd Mall — would be moving to Baxter and the growing retail area by Walmart. J.C. Penney made the move to the new store in 2008. Its East Brainerd Mall site was later remodeled into office space for Ascensus.
Hobby Lobby reports it offers over 70,000 items featuring home decor, seasonal decor, tableware, floral, art supplies, craft supplies, yarn, fabric, jewelry making, hobbies and much more.
“In 1970, David and Barbara Green took out a $600 loan to begin making miniature picture frames out of their home,” Hobby Lobby states on its website. “Two years later, the fledgling enterprise opened a 300-square-foot store in Oklahoma City, and Hobby Lobby was born. Today, with more than 900 stores, Hobby Lobby is the largest privately owned arts-and-crafts retailer in the world with over 43,000 employees and operating in forty-seven states.”
In the spring of 2017, Baxter's J.C. Penney Co. was among 138 stores to be shuttered. It closed in July that year.