Target’s red bull’s-eye logo will soon grace Port Washington’s Soundview Marketplace, with a new store scheduled to open Oct. 18.
Community leaders, residents and business owners said they are eagerly awaiting the store’s opening, which they hope will revive business in a shopping complex with multiple vacancies.
The 48,000-square-foot store, at 3 Shore Rd., replaces a King Kullen that was shuttered for more than two years. The store will be Target’s 25th location on Long Island, and its third smaller-concept model, after openings last year in Freeport and Elmont.
Target spokeswoman Kristy Welker said Port Washington was selected to “provide guests in the area with a convenient location to shop Target, one where they don’t have to travel far to shop with us.”
“The store location in Soundview Marketplace allows Target to do that and at a smaller scale than the traditional Target store,” Welker added. The typical Target store is about 130,000 square feet.
Port Washington North Village Mayor Bob Weitzner said there’s “tremendous buzz” about the store’s arrival, with positive feedback from residents in the community and surrounding neighborhoods.
“It is frankly a relief that they’re coming and that this shopping center is finally being brought back to the beauty that it deserves and that Port Washington community has longed for,” Weitzner said.
Target’s building is owned by a Texas-based LLC operated by UBS, a bank that took over the shopping center after it went into foreclosure in 2011. The shopping center is managed by Transwestern, a Texas-based commercial real estate firm.
Transwestern has recently made numerous beautification improvements, such as installing new lighting and plantings, and also repaving the parking lot.
Mike Bushman, the manager of West Marine, a boating shop in the Soundview Marketplace, said the improvements were much needed. The parking lot used to be riddled with potholes, the sidewalk was cracked and the lighting fixtures often broke, Bushman said. Now, the new owners are “really cleaning the place up,” he added.
Employees from other businesses in the Soundview Marketplace said they’re optimistic that Target will bring new life into the complex, which has more than seven empty storefronts. Jordan Desner, owner of the Soundview Cinemas, said he hoped Target would attract new customers to the movie theater.
“Since King Kullen left, it definitely has gotten a little slower,” Desner said. “There is one concern and that is parking; we’re hoping that it doesn’t take up too much parking for our customers, but overall, I think it will be positive.”
Weitzner credits Target for increasing recent interest from other national chains curious about opening in the Soundview Marketplace.
“I’m looking forward to what comes next because this is not the end of the story regarding Soundview Marketplace,” Weitzner said. “There’s definitely more to come.”