Lowes has come to town."We're very excited to be here in the Avondale area," said Lowes Store Manager Glenn Morgenweck on Jan. 4.
The national giant hardware store opened its doors in London Grove Township on Jan. 4.
"We're a one-stop convenience for most customers," Morgenweck said.
Lowes has created 121 jobs in the community. Of those employees, 110 are locals, he said.
"Some of the people they're going to find are their neighbors," Morgenweck said, referring to customers.
Lowes saw 2,500 to 3,000 people walking through its doors during opening weekend, with 775 purchases on Friday and 1,900 purchases on Saturday and Sunday, he said.
The store at State Route 41 in the London Grove Village shopping center is 117,000 square feet plus 31,700 square feet of garden center retail space.
"That's very standard," said Lowes Spokesperson Maureen Rich during a telephone interviewon Jan. 3.
Lowes also builds 94,000 square-foot stores for smaller markets, she said.
Hundreds of trucks, vans and vehicles filled the store parking lot over the weekend.
"Our goal is always to build the best store on the best site for our customers. We want to make sure we're providing them the best prices and products. And services and customer service is really what distinguishes Lowes," Rich said.
Rich had no comment on Lowes' impact to mom and pop operated small-town hardware stores, such as Pyle's, England's Hardware, Oxford Feed and Lumber and Brandywine Ace Hardware.
"We don't focus on our competition. We focus on our customers," she said.
The London Grove store is one of more than 1,475 Lowes locations in America and Canada.
Lowes will be expanding to Mexico in 2009, Rich said.
"Really the bottom line is with competition the customer wins. Competition keeps us all on our toes. And it's really surprising to most people that Lowes and our major competitor comprise only about 30 percent of the home improvement business. The remaining of that market share is held by independent retailers," she said.
Jeffery Pyle, proprietor of Pyle's Home & Supply, located within walking distance from Lowes on Route 41, is confident that his family-owned business will remain competitive.
"Since the Acme has opened we have seen an increase in our store traffic, and when Lowes opened up we have also seen an increase in our store traffic. Pyle's Home & Supply will continue to give best customer service," Pyle said. "We offer a low price guarantee, just bring in the ad, and we will match the price on that store item."
? Lowes is open from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Sunday. For more information visit www.lowes.com.