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As the Publix supermarket approaches completion, other expected tenants of the new Eagles Corner Shopping Center and its outparcels have been revealed, including a Huey Magoo’s Chicken Tenders restaurant, an Orangetheory Fitness exercise studio and Tidal Wave Auto Spa’s second Statesboro location.
The Publix store itself will be opening in mid-November “if all things go according to plan,” someone at the company replied via a Facebook message Friday. Meanwhile, a Publix Super Markets Inc. spokesperson via email pinned down the opening only to “sometime in Q4,” meaning the current quarter, which ends Dec.31.
Publix Super Markets Inc. has been hiring for the 48,000-square foot Store #1733 since August, when the company announced a couple of job fairs held in September and targeted November for opening.
Meanwhile, Watkins Real Estate Group, which developed Eagles Corner and will be the landlord to the supermarket and other businesses, has updated the shopping center’s site map, labeling more of the expected occupants by brand.
In addition to the Publix, the shopping center includes 17,500 square feet of rentable floor space in five shops in a row attached to the grocery store and in four more shops in two separate buildings at the end of the parking lot.
Watkins’ roughly triangular 12.7-acre tract also includes three outparcels, measuring between 1 acre to 1.5 acres each, on the corners. These were intended for sale or lease to other businesses that will build there and are not considered part of the shopping center.
The outparcel on the corner at the intersection of Old Register Road and Tormenta Way has now been designated for Huey Magoo’s, as Bob Peck, Watkins Retail Group’s vice president of development, confirmed in a phone conversation Thursday. He confirmed that all of the other businesses named on the diagram have signed leases or contracts and said that three others have leases or contracts in process but that he cannot yet identify those businesses.
Earlier this year, Huey Magoo’s, based in Altamonte Springs, Florida, won federal registration for the trademarked phrase, “The Filet Mignon of Chicken.” The franchisor of restaurants that serve chicken tenders and sandwiches has been expanding rapidly, opening three new locations in Georgia and Florida just in August and September.
When the Huey Magoo’s in Hinesville opened Sept. 14, it was the 34th restaurant opening in a chain now spanning seven states, but a total of 225 franchises had been sold in 10 states, according to the company’s press release regarding the Hinesville store. The 35th Huey Magoo’s opened Sept. 27 in Ormand Beach, Florida.
But the one in Statesboro, across Tormenta Way from South Georgia Tormenta FC’s new soccer stadium, won’t be opening with Publix this quarter. So far, the Huey Magoo’s outparcel is just a leveled clay pad with some building materials sitting on it.
Likewise, the space designated for a Tidal Wave Auto Spa, on the northeast outparcel behind Publix, remains vacant, so that too will require time to build, apparently well after the Publix has opened. The existing Tidal Wave Auto Spa in Statesboro, at 3 Grady Johnson Road off Fair Road, has operated under that brand identity for about eight months now and was previously a W4 Express Car Wash.
The third Eagles Corner outparcel, on the corner nearest the intersection of Old Register Road and Veterans Memorial Parkway, is marked “under contract.” Someone has contracted to acquire this site from Watkins Group for a commercial use, but Peck said he is prohibited from identifying the business until the owners are ready to announce.
Two of the shop spaces, or “suites,” within the shopping center are in a similar phase. One 3,000-square-foot space and one 1,750-square-foot space, which were still marked “available” on the site map have actually been claimed by potential tenant businesses. But Peck said he cannot name these until leases are signed, “and the leases are now out for execution.”
Really only one shop space, Suite 203 measuring 1,155 square feet, remains unclaimed at this point, he said.
All of the other businesses currently named on the diagram are set to be part of the shopping center, according to Peck.
The two largest in floor space, both noted in previous reports, are Grand Nail Lounge, set to occupy 3,500 square feet, and an Orangetheory Fitness studio, assigned 2,800 square feet.
Based in Boca Raton, Florida, Orangetheory is an international franchisor of fitness studios, with more than 1,300 locations in all 50 states and in more than 20 other countries.
Other Eagles Corner suites, measuring 1,100 to 1,500 square feet, are assigned to the Stella Boutique, which is an established, local women’s clothing shop; Great Clips; Lendmark Financial; and Tropical Smoothie.
At least some of these businesses should be able to open relatively soon.
“We’re releasing spaces to tenants in the next few weeks so they can start doing their buildouts,” Peck said. “We’re getting there.”
Speculation concerning another business that might locate in the vicinity – not on the Watkins property but on land belonging to other investors near the intersection of Tormenta Way and the new extension of Akins Boulevard – has been circulating locally for some time.
If a Chick-fil-A restaurant were built there, it would be the third in Statesboro, since there is one in the Russell Union on the Georgia Southern campus, in addition to the one much better known to the general public on Northside Drive East.
“While we would very much like to have more restaurants in the Statesboro area, we have no new locations to confirm at this time,” Brownlee Hopkins, a public relations spokesperson for Chick-fil-A’s corporate office, stated in a reply email Friday.
The Tormenta stadium, Eagles Corner and land nearer the Akins Boulevard extension are within the approximately 290-acre Old Register Road Tax Allocation District. Property tax revenue from new construction and rising values in the district is dedicated to repaying the city of Statesboro for borrowed money paid to the original developers for public infrastructure work, including the construction of Tormenta Way and the widening of Old Register Road.
Huey Magoo's, Tidal Wave and Orangetheory Fitness stake spaces at Publix shopping center – Statesboro Herald