Kerry Wood Brokers Deal – Costco coming to South Windsor; Evergreen Walk store expected to open in the fallThe Hartford Courant
SOUTH WINDSOR — Construction of a Costco Wholesale store started Monday at Evergreen Walk in South Windsor. Town Manager Michael Maniscalco said owners of the membership-based retail store are looking to open on Thanksgiving.
Sen. Saud Anwar, D-South Windsor, touted the jobs brought to town during construction and in the new, approximately 163,000-square-foot store. “Costco is already widely known for its policies of strong salaries for workers, with its starting pay at many stores at $16, well above the minimum wage,” Anwar said.
The planning and zoning commission approved the application, including a gasoline station, in November. Alan Lamson, an architect representing Costco, said electrical vehicle charging stations were considered, but owners decided not to install the wiring because customers would not be parked on site long enough to charge vehicles and technology for the wiring could change by the time chargers are installed, according to meeting minutes.
Commission member Stephen Wagner called the decision “a huge missed opportunity” saying the state (Department of Energy and Environmental Protection) is looking for installation of EV Ready parking spaces to encourage the purchase and use of electric vehicles, according to minutes. Wagner also noted that Costco, in other locations in the country, does supply charging stations.
Costco Wholesale representative Mark Marchisano responded that in the future, if it is a benefit to members, the underground wiring would be installed, according to minutes.
On Monday, Mayor Andrew Paterna welcomed the new business. “It’s been a long project a long time coming, but a lot of people put in a lot of hours to make sure this project happened in South Windsor,” Paterna said. “Welcome to Costco and thank you to all who worked on this project.”
Not everyone was thrilled, however. Resident Damian Humphrey wrote to the planning and zoning commission in October, questioning the demand for such a store in town, noting the closing of Sam’s Club in neighboring Manchester, and whether there is any assurance “that this will not be an abandoned building in five years?”
Costco Wholesale has stores in New Britain, Waterbury, Milford, Enfield, East Lyme and Brookfield, according to its website. The international company has 559 locations in 45 states and Puerto Rico and 108.3 million cardholding members. Annual revenue was $163.2 billion and the company employs 185,000 full- and part-time workers, according to its website.