Update 6/13/16 – The renovation of the former Bridgeport Metal Goods factory is approximately 80 percent complete, according to U-Haul officials. Once finished, the building will comprise 68,000 square feet of space and offer 989 storage units. It’ll also include 10,000 square feet of warehouse space for U-Box portable-storage containers. U-Haul plans to hire 35 to 50 employees, the source reported.
The property is within the Black Rock Neighborhood Revitalization Zone (NRZ). In 2007, the city launched a renewal plan for the NRZ based on 35 recommendations in the areas of business and economic development, historic preservation and land use, and fostering and support of the arts.
“It’s wonderful to see reputable businesses restoring and improving our beautiful buildings, investing in Bridgeport and creating jobs,” said Stephanie Barnes, president of the Black Rock NRZ.
Built in 1916, the factory employed up to 600 people until it closed in 1980. The building served as a warehouse until 2011, and was then vacant until U-Haul purchased it in 2014.
U-Haul has several other facilities in the area, including one on Boston Avenue and another on Fairfield Avenue.
10/29/14 – U-Haul International Inc. plans to convert a former metal-goods manufacturing plant to self-storage in Bridgeport, Conn. The property at 365 Cherry St. has been rebranded as U-Haul Moving and Storage of Bridgeport. It consists of nine buildings encompassing 146,480 square feet of space on 3.22 acres of land.
The facility currently features a temporary showroom offering truck and trailer rentals, and moving supplies. Early plans for the property include the addition of self-storage and U-Box moving and storage containers.
Patrick Keefe, marketing company president of U-Haul Co. of Lower Hudson Valley, said the goal of the acquisition is to bring the building back to its original state. The structure’s interior has many industrial characteristics as well as skylights and hardwood floors.
“This facility is in an area of town that has been in decline for many years," Keefe said. "U-Haul is the first of many businesses helping to revitalize the area and bring it back to its former condition."
The opening of the Bridgeport store is being driven by U-Haul’s corporate sustainability initiatives, which support infill development to help local communities lower their carbon footprint, according to a company press release. U-Haul’s adaptive reuse of existing buildings eliminates the amount of energy and resources required for new-construction materials and helps local cities diminish their unwanted inventory of unused buildings, U-Haul officials said.
Established in 1945, U-Haul International Inc. has more than 40 million square feet of storage space at more than 1,000 owned and managed facilities throughout North America.