When the decision was made to have LA Fitness replace Waldbaums in the Branch Shopping Plaza, the landlord asked r to move. And according to the owner, it's made a big impact on business.
"We needed, we wanted a bigger location forever," he said. "This finally opened up ... it worked out fine for me."
Figari, who is the third generation of Figari's to own the store, said he signed the lease for the new location in August of last year, was handed the keys to the store in November and started building in December. The old location remained open during the move.
The new space, which offers more room, is 40-feet wide and 60-feet long, compared to the former store that was 20-feet wide and 80-feet long.
"People are a lot more comfortable and we’ve had a lot of positive response back," he said. "I increased the selling space a lot and it’s spread out ... now everything is right up in front."
The extra space has allowed for Figari to expand the product selection in the store and have larger wine tasting events.
While Figari said the new location has been good for business, he admitted the sales for February 2012 are less than that of February 2011, something he attributes to not having foot traffic created by Waldbaums.
Figari said this lack of supermarket traffic does not worry him.
"We’ve been through this before," he said. "We’ve been in business for 60-something years and there’s been nine supermarkets since they started and we were next to three of them."
Figari said the demographic of people that will work out at the new LA Fitness is good for his business and expects more traffic when it opens.
Figari's took over half of the former home to Blockbuster, and the other half will soon be the home to June Claire Dance Studio.