After two months of construction, Belk in North Augusta is completing the first phase of its $3.5 million store expansion and remodeling project this weekend.
The 20,000-square-foot expansion has four phases, which will bring the store to a total of 64,000 square feet.
The Martintown Plaza department store is expanding into adjacent buildings previously occupied by Just Beds, CitiFinancial and Goodwill.
Upon completion, the store on Knox Avenue will feature new tile flooring, energy-efficient lighting, remodeled restrooms and fitting rooms, and modern display fixtures, said store manager Stella Northington.
“We get the building turned over to us on Friday, and we, of course, cannot move merchandise when customers are in here. “So after closing on Friday night, we will move our whole men’s area over to the new space. On Saturday night after closing, we will move all of our home department,” Northington said.
Construction crews then will begin work on the second phase of the project where the men’s and home departments are currently located. They will build a temporary wall to separate the construction from the rest of the store.
The store is being remodeled to have a “modern Southern style.” All departments, except cosmetics, will increase in space. The size of the women’s shoe department will increase by more than 4,000 square feet, Northington said.
“Shoes, by far, will get the most additional space because that is a major initiative. Everything is going to be relocated as far as departments, except cosmetics and accessories will stay pretty much in that same spot,” she said.
Northington said she hired 10 to 15 new sales and sales support employees when the remodeling project began two months ago. She plans to hire an additional 10 to 15 workers in the fall for the store’s grand re-opening, which is scheduled for early October.