An official from the real estate company, which owns the Sandy Plaza located at Route 255 and Shaffer Road in Sandy Township, has confirmed that a new Planet Fitness gym is going to be housed in a portion of the former Kmart location. In addition, Hobby Lobby Arts and Crafts Stores is “extremely interested” in locating in the other vacant side of that building.
“We are working to get Planet Fitness open as soon as possible,” said LG Realty Advisors Inc. Shopping Center Manager Brian Gumberg. LG Realty Advisors is a Pittsburgh-based real estate company which built the local plaza in 1981.
In early January, Planet Fitness Public Relations Manager Becky Zirlen announced plans that the company hopes to open in late summer, according to a previously published Courier Express article.
According to Zirlen, the fitness facility will offer state-of-the art cardio and strength equipment, free fitness training, and a Black Card Spa which will include HydroMassage beds, massage chairs, and tanning beds/booths for PF Black Card members.
“If you are not familiar with Planet Fitness, we cater to first-time and casual gym goers who may have never belonged to a gym before,” said Zirlen. “We always strive for a non-intimidating, judgement-free atmosphere where our members can feel comfortable working out at their own pace.”
Zirlen said membership always starts at $10 a month, or $21.99 a month for the PF Black Card.
In other developments, Gumberg said the ownership of Hobby Lobby has expressed an interest in locating in the DuBois area market.
“Our company has a terrific relationship with their marketing team. We are working diligently to bring them to the DuBois area,” said Gumberg.
According to its website, Hobby Lobby is primarily an arts-and-crafts store but also includes hobbies, picture framing, jewelry making, fabrics, floral and wedding supplies, cards and party ware, baskets, wearable art, home accents and holiday merchandise.
Hobby Lobby continues its steady growth, the website stated. In 2018, the company opened 54 new stores and relocated 20 store locations. In 2019, an estimated 65 new store locations will open and another 16 stores will relocate, creating approximately 2,500–3,000 jobs. Hobby Lobby currently has more than 840 stores across the nation.
“While retail strategies change, Hobby Lobby’s core values remain,” said the website. “These values led to the decision to close all stores on Sunday allowing associates time for family and for worship. They were also instrumental in the decision to give store employees pay raises well above the national minimum wage.”
“”We’re proud to own this center in DuBois,” said Gumberg. “We are based in Pittsburgh, but we are definitely committed to the DuBois area to make sure we bring first class retailers to the area. We want to make sure the shopping center continues on for the next generation.”
Gumberg acknowledged and expressed appreciation to the other business currently located in the Sandy Plaza, including the Escape Room, Napoli Restaurant and Pizzeria, Fine Wine and Good Spirits Premium Collection, Dollar General, Rent A Center and Famous Hair.
“The Escape Room is doing fantastic,” said Gumberg. “They are really excited to be part of the area here. They are doing great and looking forward to continuing.”
“We are also grateful to have Jonathan and Stephanie Weber of Napoli in the center to reinvigorate that business,” Gumberg said.
He said Sandy Township officials have also been really helpful in assisting with attracting national retail tenants to the area.
“Sandy Township is fantastic to work with,” Gumberg said. “We have really enjoyed working with the folks over at Sandy Township and look forward to continue our working relationship with them and bringing great retailers to the DuBois area.”