Home Depot STX
Home Depot announced on the radio this morning that they would soon be breaking ground and expect the store to be completed and open in the 2nd half of 2011. yeah!
I have no clue what the PFA and the de Jongh are trying to accomplish with this Home Depot. Is the STX market big enough for such a monstrous hardware store? Is the STX market even big enough for the Island Crossing Shopping Center itself? We have so many hardware stores already! How are the local hardware stores going to compete with Home Depot?
St. Thomas Home Depot is a totally different case. It was a 100% PRIVATE venture. Also, because there is so much more construction going on on STT than in STX, the STT market is big enough to support Home Depot AND local hardware stores. In STT, you have more neighboring islands traveling to STT to shop at places like Home Depot. St. Croix is isolated, so the market is for St. Croix customers only, unlike in STT.
All I see is one big "white elephant" - an expensive project with no real purpose, in which the monies loaned for the project could have been better spent elsewhere.
I think the government just backed the loans...which isn't necessarily the same thing as a subsidy unless the project goes under and the loans aren't paid.
I could be wrong about this.
I definitely think STX is big enough to support HD and another shopping center. I've lived in towns the size of STX that has 10X more development and shopping than we have here.
And I'll still patronize my local hardware stores for many things as I did when I lived on the Continent, there are some things they are just much better for.
At a minimum having a HD will begin to regulate the prices of building materials and hardware. I bet that most of the smaller stores will survive but have to be more competitive. I mean is a sheet of 3/4' plywood really worth $50 when the same item in the states is 30?. And won't it be great to get lumber that is stored inside and dry and not have to wash the mold off every piece and not having to pay $300 for a box of screws that are worth 120. I think so
Having dependable suppliers and enough quantity to do a project just may be the spark to small to medium size projects to get started., not to mention some pricing incentives How bout the influx of money from just the fact of another construction project.Seems all good to me .Local stores will have to fine tune their inventory and customers needs.....
Some things worth considering...
People said there wasn't enough business to support a Kmart before it opened on STX. Surprise: now there are two. And if anyone here has been around long enough to recall a STX before Kmart, you'll recall the slew of cheap crap vendors from east to west selling plastic junk. They're nearly all gone, and the island streets and beaches are a lot cleaner for their absence.
Enough people on STX think highly of Home Depot to travel either to STT or Miami to purchase their construction materials from them. Bringing a HD to STX only helps to recapture some of those dollars which were headed away. Additionally, the shopping center will be big revenue-generator for the island and its people, even if all the tenant stores are off-island owned.
To hell with local business. I am a local business person and I'm sick to death of being screwed by other local businesses. Businesses which don't trouble themselves to earn the respect of their customer base don't deserve anything but bankruptcy.
I'll welcome HD if they can open their doors.
rks, I couldn't have said it better myself. If a business needs special protection to survive competition then maybe it is time to change/innovate or close the doors. Why should the local population be fleeced for someone's inefficiencies?
I laugh everytime I go to Cost-U-Less because they have a 55" Vizio TV for about $2,500! It's a 3 year old model that is literally 2 generations old at a time when the current generation is LED-based and sells for $1,600 on the mainland (I saw it at Costco earlier this week.) CUL should be ashamed of themselves. You can find current generation flat screens at the Kmart appliance store but their prices are bad also (even accounting for 4% tax and shipping costs.)
I am glad to see that HD will open in STX. It has been a life savor for me rebuilding a home here in STT. Even though I shipped down a 40 foot trailer it has not been enough. I support the local merchants here but they are way out of line on some items. East End and MSI have a few good things but they can not beat HD.
So I when I need to get something I first stop by the locals then it is off to D.
I have named it however, OUT OF STOCK DEPOT.
Out of stock Depot & Island Depot!
When it first opened, they had everything to complete a project.
Now, they have 2X lumber, but 3X fasteners, etc.
Just like the other business that opened here with a stateside crew, it all turns to $hit when the locals run tings.
My slogan for Island Depot is
"You can do it, we won't help"
All the big box retailers (K-Mart, OfficeMax) have "special" island prices. Part of the calculation is freight and gross receipts tax which has to be built into the price. The other pricing consideration is what the market will bear. These retailers generate huge margins on a lot of products because they can. Just compare some products at a big box retailer to the cost of shipping it here yourself. The prices that big box retailers charge here won't be close to mainland prices..
I don't think you'll see many, if any, other hardware stores go out of business. They'll learn to survive on lower margins, drop products that they can't compete with, and find products that HD doesn't sell. They will adapt. So the competition and selection is welcome but I don't think we are going to see state-side hardware prices.
There will be several stores (projected) opening within the HD complex. I believe a property management company has already hooked up with some vendors.
I don't know if there is enough construction going on here to support HD, but it will certainly liven up that area of the island if other businesses open. I heard an iHop is in the works. But one thing for sure, that project took more than 3 years to get off the ground, with bureaucratic red tape and neighborhood resistance and demands, which the project is costing about twice than its projection now.
I shop everywhere, if only to support as many businesses as I can. You will really have to be bad for me to stop coming to your business.