U-Haul Eyes Former Kmart for Self-Storage Development in Superior, WI

Phoenix-based U-Haul International Inc., which operates more than 1,300 self-storage locations across North America, plans to purchase a former Kmart store in Superior, Wis., and convert it to self-storage. The city council approved an ordinance last week to allow interior self-storage as a permitted use in the city's highway-commercial district, according to the source. The store has been vacant for a year following its closing and displacement of 42 associates.

Phoenix-based U-Haul International Inc., which operates more than 1,300 self-storage locations across North America, plans to purchase a former Kmart store in Superior, Wis., and convert it to self-storage. The city council approved an ordinance last week to allow interior self-storage as a permitted use in the city's highway-commercial district, according to the source. The store has been vacant for a year following its closing and displacement of 42 associates.

Construction on the $6 million climate-controlled facility at 3015 Tower Ave. is expected to begin this summer. The 86,000-square-foot structure will contain up to 1,200 units as well as 3,500 square feet of retail space. To adhere to the ordinance, the building design will blend with neighboring businesses and be subject to approval from the city’s planning department, the source reported.

“It's kind of a niche the Twin Ports [area] doesn't have," said Jason Serck, the city’s planning, economic development and port director.

U-Haul plans to hire 35 people. "It's a good investment; it's employment,” Serck added.

Superior has a number of large, vacant buildings, including a shuttered Target just down the street from the Kmart. There are also several construction projects underway in the city including a hotel, housing complex and downtown office, the source reported.

Established in 1945, U-Haul owns more than 44 million square feet of storage space. The company’s corporate sustainability initiatives, which support infill development to help local communities lower their carbon footprint, has led to dozens of conversion projects in recent years.

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