Press-Republican

November 1, 2013

Lenny's Shoe and Apparel nears completion

DAN HEATH
Press-Republican

PLATTSBURGH — Work is winding up on the new Lenny’s Shoe and Apparel store in the Town of Plattsburgh.

Todd and Mark McCarthy hope to have the store open by Nov. 15.

Crews are putting the finishing touches on the 15,000-square-foot building, which is located just west of Garvey Hyundai on Tom Miller Road.

“It will be nice to be open for the holiday season,” Todd said.

25 WORKERS

He said they will start with about 25 employees; the store managers have been hired and have been training at Lenny’s locations in Vermont for the past six weeks.

The eastern part of the store will house men’s clothing, while the women’s and children’s merchandise will be at the western end.

The L-shaped building has three cupolas atop the shingled roof. The main entrance is at the inside corner of the building.

The store was designed by Joseph Architects of Waterbury, Vt., with an Adirondack theme, as evidenced by the antler light fixtures hanging from the exposed wood ceiling. The exterior features stonework on the lower part of the walls and brown shakes above.

Local contractors were used during construction, including Luck Brothers, E.T. Harris, Curtis Lumber, Ace Electric and Maliniak Masonry Buzz.

“It seems like everybody who has been involved understood what our vision was and has even added to it,” Mark said.

BIGGEST LENNY’S

Plattsburgh will be the retailer’s largest store. It provided a chance to use some of the best practices from other locations, such as running the storage space along the north and west ends of the building so merchandise can be kept near the area of the store where it will be displayed.

Lenny’s caters to a casual lifestyle, Todd said. They plan to carry the same brands as the Vermont locations but will be receptive to customer feedback on other selections.

Featured brands include Carhartt, Columbia, Merrell, New Balance, the North Face, Red Wing, Timberland, Wolverine, Woolrich, Under Armour, Uggs, Dansko and more.

‘GOOD FIT’

The brothers decided to look for a Plattsburgh location after Todd moved to the area four years ago. They had always received good feedback from New York shoppers at their Vermont stores.

“After talking with people and getting to meet them, I knew it would be a good fit,” he said.

The building has an extra 5,000 square feet that is available for lease. The brothers still have 52 acres left to the south of the new store for future development.

The property is served by town water and sewer service, as well as natural gas from New York State Electric and Gas.

The McCarthys plan to host a number of events in support of local charities, much as they do in Vermont. A recent event raised $12,500 for the Vermont Food Bank, which the McCarthys will add to. 

It helps that they have an expansive parking lot with more room to host those events than at their other locations, Mark said.

STARTED IN 1990

This is the fourth Lenny’s Shoe and Apparel. The brothers’ father, Lenny McCarthy, opened the original store in Barre in 1990, followed by the St. Albans store a few years later and then the Williston location.

There is also a Lenny’s Outlet in Barre, which advertises merchandise at discounts up to 50 percent.

Todd said they would like to add a few more locations on this side of the lake but haven’t made a decision on that yet.

PERSEVERANCE

The Plattsburgh store was originally planned for the Eaglefeather subdivision, next to Mountain View Pediatrics and Champlain Spine and Pain Management. The McCarthys were unable to close on that deal and started to look for a different location.

Plattsburgh Town Supervisor Bernie Bassett said the new store is a great addition. He was very pleased with the design of the building.

“Lenny’s is a great project for Tom Miller Road,” he said. “That project creates a nice design model for the town.”

Bassett said it would have been easy for the owners to give up when the original plan didn’t pan out. 

“An exciting part of this project is they expected to build at a different site on Tom Miller Road,” he said. “We worked with them to save their interest in coming to the Town of Plattsburgh.”

Email Dan Heath:dheath@pressrepublican.com