Make us your home page
Instagram

Vacant big box stores on U.S. 19 in Clearwater getting new tenants

CLEARWATER — Two big box stores along U.S. 19 that have been empty for a few years finally will see new occupants this summer.

Ashley Furniture HomeStore opens Friday in a former Circuit City store at 24244 U.S. 19 in Clearwater, just north of Sunset Point Road. The store has been empty since 2009.

Just 2 miles up the highway, Dick's Sporting Goods plans to open in August in a former Albertsons supermarket across Countryside Boulevard from Westfield Countryside mall, city officials said. The store sells athletic and outdoor gear and apparel from more than 300 stores nationwide.

"I think it's a testament to the economic viability of the areas they're moving into," Clearwater Planning and Development Director Michael Delk said. "There's been a fair amount of impact from the roadway construction, so it's nice to see new retailers moving into that area."

Both retailers are nationwide chains with other stores in Florida, though this will be Dick's Sporting Goods' first foray into Pinellas County. The sports retail store also has locations in Tampa, Brandon and Wesley Chapel.

The new Ashley Furniture store joins a location in Pinellas Park, as well as stores in Brandon and Wesley Chapel. It will celebrate its grand opening in Clearwater with a ribbon-cutting ceremony at 10 a.m. Friday.

Although some businesses have been negatively impacted by major construction on U.S. 19, the environment is now more stable, Delk said. Rent and land prices have fallen, encouraging businesses to reoccupy empty buildings.

"Big box retailers and users have the advantage now in terms of the marketplace," he said.

Large retailers like Ashley Furniture and Dick's Sporting Goods are seeing the slow economy as an opportunity to capture a large share of the market, said Bob Clifford, president of the Clearwater Regional Chamber of Commerce.

"It's a great opportunity for a lot of these companies who have weathered the financial woes of the past few years," Clifford said, adding that the local population still needs furniture and sports supplies.

Clifford said he is excited about the economic development occurring in the U.S. 19 corridor, which also includes a Cobb movie theater slated to open at Countryside mall in spring 2012.

The city also has seen growth in other areas, Clifford said, citing the development of hotels in downtown Clearwater and Clearwater Beach. Delk noted that a new Starbucks Coffee and a Hooters restaurant are planned for Clearwater Beach.

"There's widespread development throughout Clearwater. Would we like to have more? Certainly," Clifford said. "But . . . I think we're seeing some significant movement in the economy upward, and possibly the light at the end of the tunnel now."

Katie Park can be contacted at (727) 445-4154 or kpark@sptimes.com.

Vacant big box stores on U.S. 19 in Clearwater getting new tenants 06/29/11 [Last modified: Wednesday, June 29, 2011 7:54pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. At Menorah Manor, planning paid off during Irma

    Nursing Homes

    ST. PETERSBURG — Doris Rosenblatt and her husband, Frank, have lived in Florida all of their lives, so they know about hurricanes.

    Raisa Collins, 9, far left, works on a craft project as Certified Nursing Assistant Shuntal Anthony holds Cassidy Merrill, 1, while pouring glue for Quanniyah Brownlee, 9, right, at Menorah Manor in St. Petersburg on Sept. 15. To help keep its patients safe during Hurricane Irma, Menorah Manor allowed employees to shelter their families and pets at the nursing home and also offered daycare through the week. The facility was able to accommodate and feed everyone who weathered the storm there. [LARA CERRI   |   Times]
  2. After Irma, nursing homes scramble to meet a hard deadline

    State Roundup

    TALLAHASSEE — Florida's nursing homes and assisted-living facilities find themselves in an unfamiliar place this week — pushing back against Gov. Rick Scott's administration over new rules that require them to purchase generator capacity by Nov. 15 to keep their residents safe and comfortable in a power …

    In this Sept. 13 photo, a woman is transported from The Rehabilitation Center at Hollywood Hills as patients are evacuated after a loss of air conditioning due to Hurricane Irma in Hollywood. Nine have died and patients had to be moved out of the facility, many of them on stretchers or in wheelchairs. Authorities have launched a criminal investigation to figure out what went wrong and who, if anyone, was to blame. [Amy Beth Bennett | South Florida Sun-Sentinel via AP]
  3. Trigaux: How Moffitt Cancer's M2Gen startup won $75 million from Hearst

    Business

    TAMPA — A Moffitt Cancer Center spin-off that's building a massive genetic data base of individual patient cancer information just caught the attention of a deep-pocketed health care investor.

    Richard P. Malloch is the president of Hearst Business Media, which is announcing a $75 million investment in M2Gen, the for-profit cancer informatics unit spun off by Tampa's Moffitt Cancer Center. Malloch's job is to find innovative investments for the Hearst family fortune. A substantial amount has been invested in health care, financial and the transportation and logistics industries.
  4. Three-hour police standoff ends, thanks to a cigarette

    News

    TAMPA — A man threatening to harm himself was arrested by Tampa police on Tuesday after a three-hour standoff.

  5. Another Hollywood nursing home resident dies. It's the 9th in post-Irma tragedy.

    State Roundup

    The Broward County Medical Examiner's office is investigating another death of a resident of the Rehabilitation Center at Hollywood Hills — the ninth blamed on the failure of a cooling system that became a stifling deathtrap three days after Irma hit.

    Carlos Canal, pictured at 47 years old, came to Miami from Cuba in 1960. Above is his citizenship photo. [Courtesy of Lily Schwartz]