Customers got a first hand look at the new Co-op Home and Agro Centre yesterday as the facility opened its doors to the public for the first time.
The store was buzzing with activity and excitement as patrons roamed the aisles of the expanded and colourful layout of the new building.
“This new building has been a long time coming and we couldn’t be happier to finally be open for business,” said Shaunavon Co-op Association president Randy Morris. “Our members have been very supportive over the years and they deserve the best in products and services. This facility is something that our board, staff and members can all be very proud of.”
The new building, located along 3rd Avenue West, measures more than 18,100 square feet and cost an estimated $4.2 million to construct.
General manager Kevin Braun says the Co-op’s ongoing committment to meeting the needs of its customers was one of the biggest reasons the new Home & Agro Centre was constructed.
“We are very excited to serve our members in this contemporary new store,” said Braun. “We had definitely outgrown our old facility and this store will allow us to more adequately meet our members’ needs.”
“We will be offering expanded product lines, better displays, and expanded hours of service – 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday to Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday and noon to 5 p.m. on Sundays,” he added. “We invite everyone to stop in to see the new store and to watch for details on our grand opening celebration which will be held later this fall.”
The new building was constructed behind the old Home and Agro Centre at 591 3rd Avenue West.
Earlier this month, workers leveled the Co-op’s old lumber alley and administrative offices to make room for a new parking lot at the site. The old Home Centre is also scheduled for demolition sometime in the future.
Frontier Builders from Swift Current served as the general contractor working on the project. The architect was Maurice Soulodre Architect Ltd. of Saskatoon. The Federated Co-operative Facilities Department in Saskatoon was also involved in the project.
The Shaunavon Co-op has been investigating the possibility of building a new structure for several years. Two years ago a feasibility study was conducted on the project and the Co-op board officially approved construction of the building in April of 2014.
The old Co-op Home Centre was constructed in the late 1950s and was originally used as an agro centre. In 1992, there was an addition to the front of the facility and the product line was expanded to include home centre products.
There were smaller additions in 1998 and 2004.
Officials say, however, that the old facility had outlived its life.
The new building has an expanded floor plan and improved display areas, helping the Co-op better service its home centre customers.
The new facility will also allow the Co-op to expand its lumber, hardware and agro products.
The Home Centre project is the latest in a series of projects the Co-op has initiated in recent years to replace some aging structures. The Co-op opened its new state-of-the art food store in June of 2006 while a new C-store opened in the fall of 2011.
It’s turning out to be a big year for the Shaunavon Co-op, which is celebrating its 80th anniversary in 2015.
In April, the Co-op announced that it had enjoyed its biggest year ever in 2014, with record sales of over $42 million.
“A total of $1,564,984.00 will be allocated to members based on profits of $2,037,199.00. A portion of those funds were paid out to members at the Co-op’s annual Equity Days celebration this month.
The board also announced this year that it has approved the construction of a new corporate bulk plant which will go up behind the current card lock location. The cost of the project is being covered by FCL, but Shaunavon Co-op also plans to expand its card lock with one more lane and card reader.
Construction on the site is already underway.
The Co-op’s Eastend location also added a card lock system to its operation this year.