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What To Do With A Defunct Kmart? Make It Major Self-Storage

Aston Properties recently completed the conversion of a former Kmart building in Monroe into a 70K SF climate-controlled self-storage facility managed by Extra Space Storage, which operates about 1,400 locations nationwide.

What To Do With A Defunct Kmart? Make It Major Self-Storage
2120 West Roosevelt Blvd., formerly a Kmart

The property is Aston Properties' first conversion of former retail space to self-storage, but it is no stranger to reinventing bulky former Kmart locations. The investor previously acquired and converted a former Kmart in Harrisonburg, Virginia, into new retail space.

The Charlotte-based company is also in the process of converting a former Kmart in North Charleston, South Carolina, into a 127K SF customer care center for T-Mobile that will be ready for occupancy in the first quarter of 2018.

As for the Monroe project, which is at 2120 West Roosevelt Blvd., Aston Properties acquired the vacant building last year and spent nine months converting it, investing $1.7M to upgrade its interior and give it a new facade.

The facility offers units ranging from 25 SF to more than 300 SF, with features such as drive-up access, 24-hour video surveillance and electronic gate access.

What To Do With A Defunct Kmart? Make It Major Self-Storage

The Charlotte market is fully able to support more self-storage space, Aston Properties Director of Acquisitions and Dispositions Jamie Kneisel said.

"Demand for self-storage in metro Charlotte continues to increase, and is driven primarily by the area's robust net in-migration of new residents.”

Nationally, there is no shortage of former Kmart structures, as Sears Holdings closes them and Sears-branded stores in waves. The shrinking retailer said in July it was axing 43 more Sears and Kmart stores, after closing about 250 since the beginning of 2017.

Aston Properties is also under contract to sell two outparcels at the Monroe site to a national restaurant operator and a national gas station and convenience store operator. Those deals are expected to close during the fourth quarter.