Measure K’s vision has finally materialized. As of yesterday, Davis’ new Target store finally opened its doors.
Davis’ first big-box store at 4485 Second St. in Mace Ranch will have its grand opening on Sunday. A launch party for special guests was held on Tuesday night and yesterday marked its “soft” opening.
The 137,000-square-foot store, which will employ 208 people, will offer an expanded but not full-scale grocery section, including fresh produce, meat and baked goods.
The measure allowing the project passed with a 674-vote margin victory in November 2006 and construction began in 2008.
This grand opening weekend is one full of celebration. The grand opening coincides with the Downtown Davis Jazz Festival and Second Friday ArtAbout. Davis Neighbors’ Night Out falls on Sunday as well.
The Target building is LEED certified, or built to the U.S. Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design standards. LEED accreditation addresses its sustainability goals through building performance and site development, including water savings, energy efficiency, materials and indoor environmental quality.
The area includes a 110-foot buffer zone with a greenbelt, pedestrian walkways, covered bike parking and electric car chargers. Hundreds of trees planted on a three-acre greenbelt will separate surrounding residents from the commercial development.
Time will tell how downtown businesses will fare against the new store. The Downtown Davis Business Association approach is one of non-competition between downtown businesses and Target.
“We couldn’t have a better expression of what makes downtown a unique place to shop, dine and spend time,” said DDBA Administrator Joy Cohan. “Target has its thing to do that weekend, but Target can have its match for that. [Downtown] is a completely different and unique experience.”
The Downtown Davis Business Association made projections of Target’s future performance based on other downtown settings where Target stores have been built. Based on a study in San Luis Obispo – which is also a university town like Davis with a downtown of similar size and a Target with about the same square footage – the DDBA estimated how much local retail sales may be taken away from other business and captured by Target.
Twenty million dollars or more annually in local retail sales could be transferred away from downtown to Target, and more stores that would eventually be placed in that center, Cohan said.
“We are trying to highlight things that are unique of downtown, things that never can be neglected by a shopping center built on the periphery of town,” Cohan said. “Continuing to talk about, enhance and spread the story about what makes downtown Davis special is the best strategy in keeping downtown in the forefront in people’s minds.”
Target paid the City of Davis $100,000 in community enhancement funds. While the DDBA initially requested the entire amount, they were granted $50,000. The other half is currently in reserve, still dedicated to downtown area. The DDBA will put this money towards a branding and media campaign, which includes seeking advice from a professional marketing firm. They will focus on the Second Friday ArtAbouts and a gift card program for downtown Davis.
The City of Davis projected that the store will generate $1 million a year in local sales tax revenue, said City Principal Planner Michael Webb.
In an analysis from an environmental and socioeconomic impact report by the city, it was concluded that the Target store would not cause significant adverse impacts on other businesses. The report sought to consider whether the Target would result in physical deterioration of properties, the economic impact on existing businesses and whether or not property owners would be able to lease vacant buildings.
According to the report, the new business will not cause adverse impacts because it will capture the sales tax revenue that is lost when Davis residents spend outside the city.
In a Davis Enterprise article, Target spokesperson Anna Anderson said Target customers can expect a convenient place for a “mid-week fill-in grocery trip.”
POOJA KUMAR can be reached at email@example.com.