Menard Inc., which operates the Menards home-improvement retail chain throughout the Midwest, intends to buy a former supermarket next to one of its existing stores in the Northridge area of Milwaukee and convert it to self-storage. The company is seeking zoning approval to use the 61,700-square-foot building at 8120 W. Brown Deer Road as self-storage, with plans to eventually expand its neighboring retail location into that space, according to the source.
The current Menards facility is 162,300 square feet and is undergoing renovations to the building’s interior as well as adding warehouse space. Since the retailer doesn’t have immediate plans to expand, it would operate the former Pick ‘n Save as self-storage to help pay for ongoing maintenance costs until it needs the space for its retail operation, according to the proposal submitted to the city.
"Menards plans to be in this location for a long time, but in order for us to do this, we need to be able to continuously expand the store," company officials wrote in their proposal.
The city appears to favor the plan as a way to revitalize the area, which has been hit by several business closures, the source reported. The Pick ‘n Save closed in 2014. The nearby Northridge Mall shut down more than a decade ago. Menards opened its current retail location in 2005.
The city’s redevelopment plan for the area includes the addition of “smaller neighborhood-oriented retail businesses,” as well as the conversion of large vacant retail structures to distribution centers and light-industrial uses, according to the source.
The board of zoning appeals is expected to review the Menards proposal on July 27.
Founded in 1958 and based in Eau Claire, Wis., Menard Inc. operates more than 300 Menards home-improvement stores in 14 states, primarily in the Midwest.