Plans for the Wisconsin-based Menards chain of home improvement stores to expand its presence in Kentucky are moving forward, but a Bowling Green site that was identified and approved in 2019 is on hold.
“We still hope to build a new store in Bowling Green at some point in the future but have not yet finalized our plans,” Menards Promotions Manager Jeff Abbott said in an email Monday.
Meanwhile, work is progressing on a 249,884-square-foot Menards in Elizabethtown that Abbott expects to be open before the end of the year.
Two other Menards stores – one in Louisville and another in Paducah – are also being built.
The Menards.com website includes job openings for all three locations, which would give the retailer four sites in Kentucky. A store in Owensboro has been open for seven years.
Menards revealed plans to build a 175,000-square-foot store in Bowling Green in January 2019, when a 39.71-acre site at Campbell Lane and Eastland Street was approved for rezoning from residential to highway business.
At that meeting of the City-County Planning Commission of Warren County, Menards real estate representative Rodney Wekkin agreed to the demands of several dozen Eastland Park subdivision residents who wanted a fence built as a barrier between their homes and the commercial development.
Wekkin said at the time that Menards had plans for a Bowling Green store with about 120 employees. He said it would offer groceries along with the building materials, tools and fixtures that are the chain’s specialties.
The Menards development plan called for retail strip centers and restaurants to be built on the acreage surrounding the anchor store.
“We feel like this is a great market that can support one of our stores,” Wekkin said at that meeting. “This is part of our natural progression toward the South.”
Concentrated primarily in the Midwest, Menards has grown since its founding in 1960 into the third-largest home improvement chain in the U.S., behind The Home Depot and Lowe’s.
Menards, a privately held company with more than 350 stores in 15 states, has more than 45,000 employees and annual revenue of more than $10 billion. It doesn’t have any stores farther south than Kentucky.
– Follow business reporter Don Sergent on Twitter @BGDNbusiness or visit bgdailynews.com.