Goodwill store to open in Rockford area

Plans for LEED-certified retail store will fund job-training programs

The Plainfield Board of Trustees unanimously voted to approve a Planned Unit Development change to allow a Goodwill store on property previously approved for either a restaurant or a hotel. The store will be built behind the BP gas station on the corner of Ten Mile Road and Belmont Avenue.

Ken Watkins, president of Architectural Concepts, talks about a new Goodwill store to the Plainfield Township board on Monday, Oct. 4.

Ken Watkins, president of Architectural Concepts, presented the project to the board on Monday, October 4, and said traffic studies and visibility lead Goodwill officials to believe it will be one of the most successful stores. Watkins said there will be about 12 people working in the store at any one time with a total of about 25 hired by the company for employment there.

The Goodwill Board of Directors unanimously approved building the LEED-certified retail store on the corner of US-131 (exit 97) and 10 Mile Road in Algoma Township. The property sits adjacent to BP and across the street from Meijer. Pinnacle Construction Group Inc. will break ground in mid-November. The construction of the 14,000-square-foot store will open in late spring 2011.

Blueprints will be very similar to the Standale store on Lake Michigan Drive, which opened last November. The store’s interior will feature bright vibrant colors along with natural lighting and other LEED elements. This store will service not only the Rockford community, but also Algoma, Cedar Springs and Sparta areas.

“This is a great opportunity for our shoppers to experience the ‘new Goodwill.’” stated Jill Wallace, chief marketing and communications officer. “As our second LEED-certified store, Goodwill is making great strides in the green movement of greater Grand Rapids. Additionally, our presence in the growing Rockford community will further support our mission of putting people with barriers to employment back to work.

Although the change was met with approval from all board members, Vic Matthews said he was disapponted.

“There is a real need for a decent restaurant in that area. I can’t hold it against Goodwill that we couldn’t get a restaurant there. We need to change it.”

Clerk Scott Harvey said the store will be an asset to the township. The board asked if another Goodwill store would be closed because of opening the new one and were assured this wasn’t the case.

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