WAXAHACHIE — Work is underway on the newest retail development in Waxahachie — North Grove Business Park.

The 69-acre site, located near Mushroom Road on U.S. Highway 77, will contain a mixture of retail businesses and restaurants, said its developer Brett Hess with Hi View Real Estate.

“They are turning dirt right now. I bet we will be pouring concrete in 60 days, but that depends on how much it rains this spring. The first grade for all of the roads is in, and they are putting in utilities, and the detention pond is in,” Hess said. “The only thing that has changed since our preliminary plat was the retention pond, which is kind of cool. It is going to open up a different type of atmosphere.”

Hess said the area near the pond is going to provide a nice home for a restaurant that should occupy a building between 7,000 – 8,000 square feet. The restaurant will have an outside patio deck located near the pond, which will feature a fountain.

Another new element of the North Grove Business Park is a 12,000 square foot building that will contain spaces for five to eight businesses. The building will feature space for a doctor’s office, as well as restaurants and retail options.

Hess estimated that about 50 percent of the North Grove Business Park has already been sold, with some of the businesses already committed including a mini storage facility and Chicken Express.

One of the retailers anchoring the development is a hardware store, Atwoods Ranch and Home.

“The significance of Atwoods coming to this site is many. One is job creation. Atwoods alone will create 70 jobs. About half full time and about half part time,” said Hess at the Waxahachie City Council meeting held July 18, 2016. “Atwoods is a home and ranch department store. It has a huge clothes department, a huge food department and a very large home and garden department. One thing that I would like to point out is Atwood will be a destination point and will bring a lot of people from out of town to the city. It will bring in county tax dollars to the city.”

According to the Atwoods website, the company was founded in 1960 in Enid, Oklahoma and operates 60 stores in five states. Some of the locations in Texas include Greenville, Gainesville, Kilgore, Lake Worth and Nacogdoches.

According to a Daily Light article from July 19, 2016, the exterior of the Atwoods building is looking to use a combination of CF mesa coated insulated panels and masonry blocks. These types of materials have been used in the construction of schools, gymnasiums, restaurants and retail.

“They are about to get their permit to break ground and they said it would take them about eight months before they can open. They are pretty quick. It is like Academy. Once they got the base down the building flew,” Hess said. “I think that it changes that area of the city. It says that retail can work that far north and more is going to come. This is a flagship store for Atwoods. It is the largest store in their chain. It is 72,000 square feet. This is what they will model other stores after.”

Hess said he believes that the development will also provide additional retailers another location to expand.

"You know what I think that we will see moving up here are the guys that are down here that need another location. The Autozones, the CVS Pharmacies and the Walgreens. The guys like that,” Hess said. “They are going to need a store with all of that residential out there. Those (residents) are not going to want to come all the way down here. So I think that we are going to see people opening their second locations, especially with North Grove (subdivision) across the street and the way that it is growing.”

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