At least six new facilities to be built at The Highlands


At least six new facilities are either being built or about to be.

You may not notice them as you go about your shopping, but the additions will include everything from a place to get a cup of coffee to the largest store most people have ever seen.

The space between Best Buy and Cabela’s is about to become a Hobby Lobby — a popular purveyor of arts and crafts, home decor and wedding supplies.

“It’s going to be about 50,000 square feet,” said Tim McCormick, Ohio County commissioner. “They’re very ambitious. The Hobby Lobby people claim they will open sometime around March or April of this year.”

Starbucks opened briefly at the Highlands, then closed, and now is returning in a space that’s already under construction.

“They’re going to be next door to Quaker Steak and Lube,” said McCormick. “It’s going to be in a very small strip, about 4,000 square feet, and there will be a Starbucks, the Xfinity store will be next door to it and we’re looking for a possible third store to slide between those two.”

Xfinity and Starbucks should both open this summer.

Mennard’s, a mammoth full-service home improvement store, has broken ground and will start building in about two months.

“Probably around March we’re hoping they’ll start,” said McCormick. “Now it’ll take a while to build it. But it’s going to be a 200,000 square foot building so that’s going to be a large building to put up.”

An athletic complex is already visibly taking shape — the foundation is laid, and the steel is up.

“Six basketball courts, any of which can be converted to volleyball,” said McCormick. “There’s going to be a lot of different activities that can take place. The soccer field can be used for lacrosse. There’s baseball, softball.”

And that’s good news for Bubba’s Gourmet Burghers and Beer, which has until now been on the far end of The Highlands.

“It’s going to drive more traffic down this way,” said Rob Druschel of Bubba’s. ‘We’re working with The Highlands on actually doing things when there’s events going on.”

The athletic complex is a $25 million investment, and it will take up 400,000 square feet. They’re hoping it will be open by October of this year.

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