Phoenix-based U-Haul International Inc., which operates more than 1,300 self-storage locations across North America, is converting an abandoned strip mall to self-storage in Baraboo, Wis. The facility at 625 Linn St. opened last month with a temporary showroom, offering moving and packing supplies, truck and trailer rentals, professional hitch installation, and U-Box portable-storage containers.
The 16.11-acre property was once anchored by a JCPenney store, but has been vacant for more than eight years, according to a press release. Renovations are underway to add indoor, climate-controlled units, which are expected to be available early next year. Propane sales will also be offered in the future.
"This is a beautiful community and it doesn't deserve to have empty buildings sitting around and becoming outdated," said Adam Sonnleitner, president of the U-Haul Co. of Southwestern Wisconsin and Rockford. "We're excited to make our community look more welcoming while serving the moving and storage needs of our residents here."
U-Haul has several conversion projects underway, including a JCPenney store in Spokane, Wash. U-Haul Moving & Storage of U-City opened in June with a temporary showroom.
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.