Bass Pro Shops still plans Augusta store

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Despite a stagnant economy, Missouri-based Bass Pro Shops still hopes to begin work later this year on its 100,000-square-foot Augusta store off River Watch Parkway.

"We were pleased with our fourth quarter and also pleased -- so far -- with the first quarter this year," said Larry Whitely, Bass Pro's communications manager. "So we're ready to move ahead."

The store, which will employ about 250 people, will take 10 to 12 months to complete once construction begins, he said.

"Right now we're still waiting on the developer to do some things at the site," he said. "We haven't been able to move forward anymore until they get their part done."

The developer, Texas-based MGHerring Group, is working with a local developer, Frank Mullins, to get the project under way.

"The big thing now is that the Herring Group is working on infrastructure," said Walter Sprouse, the executive director of Richmond County's Economic Development Authority.

Curbs and parking areas designed for earlier proposed projects at the site have to be ripped out and redesigned, he said, and plans are being drafted to move power lines, or possibly put them underground.

Bass Pro will benefit from about $25 million in tax-exempt financing arranged by the development authority but will pay big dividends through its future economic impact on the Augusta area.

"We think it will be a huge project for this region," Mr. Sprouse said. "They continue to use the phrase that River Watch and I-20 is what they call the 'new crossroads of the area' and the first exit after the river."

The Bass Pro store is part of a larger development that eventually will encompass most of the 132-acre site and tie it in with the Augusta Canal, which runs along its northern boundary.

Reach Rob Pavey at 868-1222, ext. 119, or rob.pavey@augustachronicle.com.

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wcr250
41
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wcr250 03/03/09 - 05:27 am
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This Texas group has no

This Texas group has no credibility.This is akin to the old regency mall.it was graded for years before anything ever got built.If bass Pro wants a store here why don;t they quit fooling with these Inept realtors from Texas.

edst4
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edst4 03/03/09 - 07:48 am
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I say let them build at exit

I say let them build at exit 190, The super wal-mart is moving right along. There is plenty of land.

BarstoolDreamer
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BarstoolDreamer 03/03/09 - 09:15 am
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I don't know how people have

I don't know how people have been catching fish in the Augusta area without a big box fishing store in town.

quilt4acure
0
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quilt4acure 03/03/09 - 09:57 am
0
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If we want the BPS to

If we want the BPS to survive, we should put more pressure on the Corps of Engineers to increase our lake level!!!

edst4
0
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edst4 03/03/09 - 10:03 am
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LOL Barstool, I do have to

LOL Barstool, I do have to give credit to them though. I heard people go nuts when they go into a Bass Pro Shop.

JackBootedThug
0
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JackBootedThug 03/03/09 - 10:24 am
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A funny thing about Bass Pro

A funny thing about Bass Pro Shops, according to one of their former management employees, their biggest selling item is coffee cups. Everyone who goes there wants a souvenir of their visit, kind of like when you go to Six Flags or Disney World. I think what Bass Pro will reveal when they open is that our area already has a couple of good local stores who have good prices and treat people well.

jackfruitpaper833
41
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jackfruitpaper833 03/03/09 - 10:26 am
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Have you ever caught a BASS,

Have you ever caught a BASS, I have, oh man what a catch and the fight to get them in, I most def will trek out there to buy something.

triscuit
2856
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triscuit 03/03/09 - 10:34 am
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0
Barstool, have you ever been

Barstool, have you ever been to a BassPro Shop? They have hunting items, clothing of all types, gifts...the fishing stuff is just a fraction of what they sell. Kids love it too because of all the exhibits. If it ever gets here, it will be super! It is a real destination store.

TrukinRanger
1748
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TrukinRanger 03/03/09 - 10:36 am
0
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I see it being popular at the
Unpublished

I see it being popular at the beginning because of the curiosity factor.... but after that... down the tubes like most things in Augusta

GSneed
0
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GSneed 03/03/09 - 10:38 am
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Exit 190 is Co-Co, right?

Exit 190 is Co-Co, right? That's a shame that you don't want Augusta/Rich-Co to reap any of the tax benefits. Didnt Co-Co pull out of the original conpcept for a Super Wal-Mart when Co-Co found out that half-the store would be in each county and that the tax dollars would be shared? How divided we are... Like the rest of world sees us divided when Rush gets up on his soap box, as the does the rest of Georgia sees us locals as bumbling idiots!

localjay
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localjay 03/03/09 - 10:44 am
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Bass Pro Shops are successful

Bass Pro Shops are successful because they do their homework on where they will locate. The Riverwatch property is apparently ideal for them...close to four counties, etc.
I am amazed at how negative some people can be on this post about good things happening in Augusta. Bass Pro Shop will attract plenty of shoppers, and I'll bet other retail stores will locate close by. Thanks to all in Augusta who made this possible!

curly123053
4246
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curly123053 03/03/09 - 10:55 am
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I have been in Houston since

I have been in Houston since October helping care for my brother who has cancer. While here we have visited 2 Bass Pro Shops in the nearby suburban cities of Katy and Pearland. These 2 BPS's are tourist attractions that draw crowds everyday. They both have a very large aquarium with all types of native fish as well as unique displays relative to the areas they are located. They are both loaded with fishing and hunting supplies as well as all types of clothing that will attract people(especially women) just for the types of different styles they offer. I think a Bass Pro Shop anywhere in the CSRA would be a win-win opportunity after seeing how well they are thriving here.

godogs
0
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godogs 03/03/09 - 11:05 am
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I just don't get putting

I just don't get putting another store for which we already have several similar stores and it can't be the fishing items that sell as there is NO WATER IN THE LAKE. If it makes then I feel sure Sports Authority, Academy Sports or Dick's will close within a year or so after that. I already see Sports Authority lookiing like it might be the first to go. Never anyone over there. Build one and close one and then that shopping center will be starting to empty as they build more right down the road. All we need is more stores just to have more vacant shopping centers.

curly123053
4246
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curly123053 03/03/09 - 11:20 am
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I don't see any Sports

I don't see any Sports Authority, Academy Sports, or Dick's closing because of a Bass Pro Shop as they are all thriving here in the midst of these BPS's in the Houston suburbs. A Bass Pro Shop is a "people grabber" who will flock there from several counties and some of them will frequent the other businesses too. localjay, there are fear mongers in every group of posters on this site that deserve to just be ignored. Bass Pro Shops would be good for this area. They have good reasonable prices, and oh, I almost forgot, they sell fishing boats too.....The BPS in Pearland even has a seafood restaurant inside of it that is excellent. Would be nice if the proposed BPS in Augusta has the same.....has anybody heard if they will?

thistownisunbelievable
1
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thistownisunbelievable 03/03/09 - 11:32 am
0
0
Quit complaining.

Quit complaining.

disssman
6
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disssman 03/03/09 - 11:34 am
0
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I would like to see some more

I would like to see some more on the 25 Mil tax exemption arranged by the Development Authority. What does that mean for the citizens of Augusta. I believe that means we derive no increase to our tax base when this facility moves in. If that is so, Where did the money come from to assure these tax free bonds? Man I sure wish we had a Budget in tyhis town that was transparent to the citizens and not a top-secret document.

sprintman
0
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sprintman 03/03/09 - 12:02 pm
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Augusta city and metro area

Augusta city and metro area median income rises every year. These companies do their homework before they locate. VAR is a prime site for development. Look at the number of cars that drive down riverwatch on a day to day basis. Augusta is growing everyday so of course we are going to attract companies. With a metro area of 545,000 people. Most of the people shopping at Riverwatch will probably be North Augustans. Even though West Augusta/Martinez is right there.

sprintman
0
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sprintman 03/03/09 - 12:14 pm
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I know North Augustans and

I know North Augustans and Aikenities are ready for VAR. Much shorter commute than to Augusta mall. Like they have to do presently.

Georgiais1
0
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Georgiais1 03/03/09 - 12:22 pm
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Now we won't have to drive to

Now we won't have to drive to Atlanta or Charlotte...Good deal for all the sportsmen..

galaxygrl
1165
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galaxygrl 03/03/09 - 12:38 pm
0
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I love BPS and I am not a

I love BPS and I am not a hunter or fisher. Their stores are visually entertaining.

Lipstick
0
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Lipstick 03/03/09 - 12:38 pm
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I have friends who detour

I have friends who detour miles out of their way (when traveling) just to hit up a Bass Pro Shop. It will be fantastic for the area - regardless of whether or not we have a lot of local sportsmen.

sprintman
0
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sprintman 03/03/09 - 12:39 pm
0
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Georgais#1 after a while not

Georgais#1 after a while not at all. If Augusta keeps getting retail not presently here like it has been doing. Augusta now has pf changs, five guys burger, chop house, coach, sephora, etc. Costco said they were coming to VAR. I hope so.

Lp_J
0
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Lp_J 03/03/09 - 01:04 pm
0
0
great for our area now we

great for our area now we wont have to go to macon ,savannah,atlanta or myrtle beach to shop at their store

BakersfieldCityLimits
1
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BakersfieldCityLimits 03/03/09 - 01:16 pm
0
0
Will never happen. NO BASS

Will never happen. NO BASS Pro Shop will be built. Not going to happen.

Poor-Enough
0
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Poor-Enough 03/03/09 - 01:17 pm
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I was in North Myrtle Beach

I was in North Myrtle Beach at the Bass Pro Shop there last week. The Associates were friendly, and helpful and even went out of their way to find what I was looking for. The price was right, and cheaper than Walmart (I'd just come from Walmart), so I purchased my items that BPS.

I don't own a BPS coffee cup, hat or T-shirt, and don't intend too. When I buy from BPS it's because I can't get what I'm looking for locally. I've shopped BPS for about 15 years. Cabela's and Gander Mountain also. I just watch for the sales and see if it's something I need or want.

The more of the "Big Box" stores we have, the better off our area will be. It signifies quality of life and that's something many "BIG BOX" employers are looking for.

Lp_J
0
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Lp_J 03/03/09 - 01:40 pm
0
0
its a great store any outdoor

its a great store any outdoor equipment you need or want at decent prices also

mgroothand
5
Points
mgroothand 03/03/09 - 01:49 pm
0
0
While I neither hunt nor

While I neither hunt nor fish, BPS is a visual delight. If you appreciate the fine art of taxidermy that is especially true. Their signature store in Springfield, MO attests to that. Every North American animal, fish or bird is mounted there surrounded with a display of their natural habitat.

drumbeater1
1
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drumbeater1 03/03/09 - 02:06 pm
0
0
with american

with american sportsman,walmart,k-mart,and all the other sprorting goods outlets,is bass pro shops that big of a deal/ they had a store here once years ago and closed it, i went there.no biggie.

themaninthemirror
0
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themaninthemirror 03/03/09 - 02:07 pm
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I live in an area that is

I live in an area that is known for it's bass fishing. On Saturday and Sunday mornings you can find license plates from everywhere in Georgia and surrounding states. But since the lake levels are down so far, the marina owners say they are barely doing a thousand dollars a month in business.In fact there are some spots where you can wade from one bank to the other, that is how far down it has gotten.If BPS comes, they need to bring some water with them.

ITDoc
1
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ITDoc 03/03/09 - 02:12 pm
0
0
BPS at the proposed location

BPS at the proposed location is a very astute business move. It is indeed an attraction in and of itself and the tax money used to bring it to existence is a great investment. Congratulations are in order for Richmond County for snaring this plum.

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