The South Shore T.J. Maxx location at the "Y" will open its doors this Sunday at 8 a.m. for the store's long-awaited grand opening.
T.J. Maxx, which advertises itself as a retailer that offers brand-name fashion at affordable prices, presented a fully executed and notarized lease in June to the city of South Lake Tahoe. The exterior of the Garfinkle building had been remodeled over the past year to attract a new tenant.
Construction for the interior remodel on the 23,000-square-foot tenant space started in July. It's been a long, nightmarish process navigating the permitting required to bring the business to Tahoe, said South Lake Tahoe Mayor Pro Tem Tom Davis, and he's relieved the finish line is in sight.
"My goal on the council is to bring business to town and it was a maze of red tape," Davis said.
Since Davis got involved in the project a year and a half ago, he said the city has worked with the owners and the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency to facilitate the smoothest process possible. Permitting and construction issues still arose, and the spring 2012 opening that the owners indicated in a statement from the city was pushed back to October and then to November.
TJX Companies Inc. Public Relations Supervisor Brittany Welch confirmed the Nov. 11 opening, and wrote in an email that the delays were part of the corporation's commitment to opening the best store possible for Tahoe residents.
Welch said that T.J. Maxx stores employ 60 full- and part-time associates in general. It's a much-needed influx of jobs in a town where unemployment continues in the double digits, Davis said.
The store fills a void left in the area, and will hopefully bring more people into the community, Davis said. Already a shoe store is negotiating with the same landlord to fill a property adjacent to the T.J. Maxx, Davis said. He did not know which shoe store was involved.
"We need retail. Period. The city's put a lot of effort into this. After this project we need to sit down and critique what went right and what went wrong," he said.
TJX Companies, Inc. operates more than 980 T.J. Maxx stores nationwide.