Home décor retailer At Home is planning its entrance onto Long Island, while discount grocer Aldi and flooring chain Floor & Decor have local expansions in their sights.
All three are planning new stores in the 5000 block of Sunrise Highway, in Sayville Plaza in Bohemia, according to the town of Islip. The shopping center has been plagued by large-space vacancies in recent years, after tenants left due to the demise, bankruptcies or mergers of their parent companies.
Kmart, which closed in February 2020, left a huge hole — 110,000 square feet — that is expected to be divvied up by the new stores.
Floor & Decor, which has "coming soon" signs outside of its Sayville Plaza building, is the only retailer confirming its impending arrival.
What to know
- Sayville Plaza shopping center in Bohemia has been plagued by vacancies in recent years.
- Three major retailers are making plans to open stores at the center.
- Flooring chain Floor & Decor will open next month.
- Home decor retailer At Home and discount grocer Aldi have filed permit applications.
"Floor & Decor is thrilled to open our doors in Bohemia," Daniel Kuck, the new store’s chief executive merchant, said in a Floor & Decor statement. "We are excited to introduce both professional customers, as well as homeowners, to our one-stop solution for their flooring needs."
Floor & Decor, which sells hard-surface flooring and accessories, will take over most of Kmart’s former space when it opens its third Long Island store. The 80,000-square-foot warehouse store and design center will open Sept. 16, according to a statement from the Atlanta-based retailer, which operates 147 warehouse stores and two design studios in 33 states.
Renovation work is taking place now.
Portions of Sayville Plaza are owned separately by different companies.
The portion that used to hold Kmart and other stores is owned by Sayville Menlo LLC, which is a subsidiary of a Clifton, New Jersey-based real estate investment trust, Arctrust.
Arctrust did not respond to Newsday’s requests for comment.
At Home plans to take over some of Kmart’s former space, as well as space left vacant by OfficeMax, Borders Books and Sports Authority, according to Islip town spokeswoman Caroline Smith.
The landlord for that portion of the shopping center submitted a building application to the town of Islip in June for renovations for the planned 94,000-square-foot At Home store and the retailer submitted an application for an interior alteration permit in July, Smith said.
Plano, Texas-based At Home Group Inc. declined to comment.
The retailer, which describes itself as a "home décor superstore," has 231 stores, including eight in New York state, but none on Long Island.
Discount grocer Aldi plans to take about 30,000 square feet on the west side of the former Kmart location, Smith said.
"The property owner filed a permit application at the end of June to create the new tenant space for Aldi," she said.
The German discount grocer has more than 2,000 stores in 37 states, including eight on Long Island. Aldi, which also plans to open a new store in Shirley in October, declined to comment.
A different direction
Breslin Realty Development Corp., a Garden City-based real estate firm, owns part of Sayville Plaza through an affiliate, Sayville Plaza Development Co.
Tenants in Breslin's property include Panera Bread, Chipotle, Old Navy and Jennifer Furniture.
Robert Delavale, Breslin’s vice president of leasing, declined to comment on Aldi, At Home or Floor & Decor’s plans since that portion of the shopping center is not owned by his company. But he did say that the center is headed in a better direction since Kmart left.
"The shopping center is on its way back. It was always a great shopping center. I think the fact that Kmart was the white elephant there, certainly the fact that it was vacant, as well as the fact that it was deteriorating" was a major issue, he said.
Breslin has filled some vacancies in its section of Sayville Plaza. In April, a Jennifer Furniture store relocated from Patchogue to Sayville Plaza, taking a 10,000-square-foot space that home décor retailer Pier 1 vacated in February 2020, the same month it filed for bankruptcy.
In April, Northwell Health opened a temporary facility for COVID-19 vaccinations and testing in part of the space that Babies R Us vacated in 2018, Northwell spokesman Jason Molinet said.
Northwell will occupy that space until at least the end of the year, he said.