BUCKHANNON — “Quality tools at ridiculously low prices” are coming to Buckhannon, city officials revealed Thursday.
Mayor David McCauley said Harbor Freight Tools — a discount tool supplier that’s made selling great tools for less its mission and motto — plans to open a location near Lowe’s in front of Buffalo Wild Wings on Route 20 in Buckhannon. At Thursday’s regular city council meeting, McCauley was reading his concluding remarks when he revealed that officials with PennTex Ventures LLC — the business that’s constructing the Harbor Freight Tools store and owns the land it will be built on — had praised city officials for providing a business-friendly climate to PennTex Ventures’ employees during talks.
Ted Donald, executive vice president of PennTex Ventures, confirmed Friday that Harbor Freight Tools plans to lease, occupy and operate a location in Buckhannon that will likely open in spring 2018. PennTex Ventures, based in Greensburg, Pennsylvania, owns the 3 acres the Harbor Freight Tools store will be constructed on.
“We will own the building and Harbor Freight will occupy the building,” Donald told The Record Delta in a phone interview. Donald said PennTex Ventures is a group of real estate developers that specialize in construction, management and ownership of retail properties, predominantly in the eastern half of the United States.
Although officials with Harbor Freight Tools did not offer an official comment for this story, Donald said construction will move quickly. Harbor Freight Tools will be housed in a 15,000 square-foot building, and construction is likely to occur over the winter months, depending on the weather, he said.
“We anticipate starting with the utilities’ work and extensions and relocations in the next two weeks, with an opening date of probably late springtime,” Donald said.
According to its website, Harbor Freight Tools is headquartered in Calabasas, California, and maintains about 800 stores throughout the country. When it first opened as a family-owned business in 1977, the company committed to providing working people with “great quality tools at the lowest prices.”
To keep costs down, Harbor Freight purchases tools and equipment directly from the same factories that manufacture more expensive brands and then pass the savings onto the consumer, the Harbor Freight website states.
“From hand tools and generators, to air and power tools, from shop equipment to automotive tools, Harbor Freight offers more than 7,000 tools and accessories at quality levels that match or exceed competing brands, but at prices that are up to 80 percent less,” the tool and equipment supplier’s website says.
PennTex Ventures officials thought discounted tools would sell well in Buckhannon, which they said has a business-friendly climate.
“We selected the land first. We think Buckhannon is a good place to do business, and this was a good business opportunity,” Donald said. “Looking at the market, the Harbor Freight type of use was missing, and we thought that it would be an appropriate retail tenant to bring to the market.
“Municipal officials have been a pleasure to work with,” he added. “They have been very engaged and very, very helpful. It’s been a very good process. It’s nice to come to a community where business is welcome.”
For his part, McCauley said the city is happy to serve as home to Harbor Freight Tools.
“We are thrilled to welcome Harbor Freight to our community,” the mayor said Friday. “We believe their decision to locate in Buckhannon speaks highly both for their company and our community. This will provide another excellent employment opportunity for our residents. Buckhannon just got stronger.”
To learn more about Harbor Freight Tools, visit its website at www.harborfreight.com.