TAYLOR — La-Z-Boy announced plans to anchor a new development in the “Eureka Way!” retail corridor. The City Council unanimously approved a Brownfield redevelopment plan for the site Sept. 6.
The Monroe-based furniture maker will occupy the former Taylor Tool location at 21300 Eureka, between the Norfolk Southern railroad tracks and Hooter’s.
The entire retail 3.4-acre site is an $8.4 million investment including construction of a 23,200-square-foot commercial building, anchored by La-Z-Boy (15,600 square feet). The remaining space will be occupied by retail and restaurant tenants.
The old industrial buildings — vacant since 2002 — were demolished in 2011. The former occupants used an extensive underground system of tunnels, tanks and vaults that included contaminants, including an oil-filled sump in one room. The environmental contamination associated with those operations poses development constraints that are Brownfield eligible, along with requirements of a storm water retention system.
The proposed project takes into account all of the environmental problems at a cost of $633,943 including environmental assessments; contaminated soils, groundwater management and oil pit removal; specialized connections to water lines; demolition of pavement, curbs, gutters and storm sewer; infrastructure improvements; site preparation; and Brownfield Plan preparation.
The project redevelops a contaminated site, brings increased jobs and tax base (post-development taxable value is estimated at $1.5 million). The plan also matches the city’s vision for the corridor, with enhanced street scaping, safer walk ability and traffic flow.
Mayor Rick Sollars said he was excited about all of new happenings in the Eureka corridor. He said that when La-Z-Boy CEO Kurt Darrow called to discuss returning to Taylor and Eureka Road, they looked at options.
La-Z-Boy previously occupied what is now Hantz Financial, 22919 Eureka, before that franchise store went out of business. The new location will be operated by La-Z-Boy, which was founded in 1927. The company employs more than 11,000 people.
“Eureka Way!” between Telegraph and Allen roads has seen much development and redevelopment, keyed by investments and improvements at Southland Center and the new Trader’s Point development by Menards — in the site of the old Gibraltar Trade Center. Many other businesses have followed, including Panera, Golden Corral, Cinemark and PizzaPapalis.