According to plans filed with the township recently, Ollie’s intends to take over the former 32,000-square-foot space previously occupied by the pet store within the nearly shuttered shopping center, which is located on Blair Mill Road.
“The demo work is being done in the building right now,” said George Lisson, Ollie’s manager of new store construction. “We plan to take possession on July 20.”
A grand opening is set for Aug. 22, Lisson said.
Lisson said 50 to 55 workers would be hired for store setup prior to opening. He said 35 to 40 employees, both full and part-time, would be needed to operate the discount department store, which based on operational hours for the other 118 Ollie’s stores, would be Monday through Saturday from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. and Sundays from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Ollie’s, which is based in Harrisburg, has recently been expanding into the Philadelphia market, Lisson said, noting recent additions in Bristol, Kennett Square and Cherry Hill, N.J.
“If you take a look at the Philadelphia area, in general, it’s only maybe an hour and a half from our home base,” Lisson said, adding that the company has “evolved” since those first central Pennsylvania stores opened 30 years ago. “Horsham is going to be store No. 131.”
Today, Ollie’s “semi-lovely” warehouse-style discount department stores are located in 12 states.
Despite the “no frills” approach, plans filed with Horsham show a building fitout and total construction with a $290,200 price tag, including $87,000 for building work, $9,200 for plumbing, $69,000 for mechanical and $125,800 for electrical.
In addition to improvements for the Ollie’s addition, Horsham Township Manager Bill Walker said the township issued a building permit for façade improvements for Village Mall as a whole.
Chinese restaurant Panda Pavilion, one of three tenants besides Acme and Dollar Tree, has been closed since March as $23,000 in interior renovations are undertaken in a new space beside the dollar store.
Gerald Simon, CFO of New York-based Carlyle Management Corp., which owns the Village Mall, told Patch previously that he could not disclose specifics of the planned upgrades.
"It is in process," was all that Simon would say.