Located on Dorset Street in South Burlington, close to the University of Vermont, the store will see Target complete the full set, now being represented in all of the 50 States. Stock held at the store will be geared to the area and will include clothing, groceries, health and beauty products and home-ware. Instead of the more standard size unit of 130,000 square feet, this new outlet in Vermont will be considerably smaller at just 60,000 square feet.
The smaller format store is seen as a better fit for the location and is consistent with the company’s aim to open 130 of these smaller units across the US by 2019. This is also a response to the changing face of retail in general with the increasing prominence of online shopping. Target did originally look to open its first outlet in the state back in 2012, one which would have been the full 130,000 square feet.
This was due to be in the town of Williston, 4 miles south-east of South Burlington, but it failed to pass the planners approval, largely due to its size being deemed out of character for the town.
No doubt the introduction of one of the largest retailers in the US to the community will please some and irritate others. Target may well have softened the blow and eased opinion by committing to increasing the minimum wage paid to all staff to $11 per hour, with the pledge of this being increased to $15 per hour by 2020.
It could also be noted that back in 2015 when Kmart said they would be closing their South Burlington store, the local paper’s survey of residents had Target topping the list of preferred replacements.
Formed in 1962, the Minneapolis based retailer will be hoping its location close to the University will bolster its success. The law under Act 250 has previously given quite a broad range of discretion to local regional commissions to deny projects for reasons of aesthetics, historic sites or natural beauty. South Burlington has decided now is the time to allow Target in to their neighbourhood and only time will tell whether the local residents use it for their shopping.
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