Warehouse retail giant Costco plans to build a new store in Northeast Anchorage at a competitor’s former location, according to records filed with the municipality.
The $5.1 million project will include Costco at 1074 N.G., north of Glenn Highway, according to city records. The former Sam’s Club in the Tikhatanu Commons Mall on Muldoon Road has been asked to renovate.
According to Anchorage’s permit management supervisor, Gretchen Stular, project officials are seeking a municipal permit to renovate the building and build a Costco business center.
In a staff report about the project in November, Craig Lyons, municipal planning director, said the plans would “repurpose and add parking spaces, add landscape islands, building facades, and repair and building facades.” Will update. “These modifications to the overall site plan are minor and do not significantly alter the function of the commercial shopping centre.”
Costco, based in Washington state, operates four warehouse stores in Alaska, and several hundred nationally. There are two in Anchorage. There’s one in Juneau and Fairbanks.
The Costco Business Center is separate from the warehouse stores, according to the company’s website.
The site says that Costco operates more than 15 business centers in the US. They are available to any member but cater to small businesses. They offer additional items not found in the warehouses. They open at 7am instead of 10am but are closed on Sundays.
Contractors involved in the project declined to comment. He referred questions to Costco executives, who did not return calls.
The proposed Anchorage store is not listed among Costco stores slated to open within the next four months, according to Costco’s website. An online Costco form for media inquiries went unanswered early Friday, but the site included this statement: “We cannot comment on locations that will open more than three months from today.”
Stuller said the municipality has issued an interior demolition permit for the project. The permit allows work to begin at the site, she said.
On Thursday afternoon, the building was closed and appeared empty with no activity.
The lot is approximately 650,000 square feet, about the same size as the Costco on Deborah Road, and smaller than the Costco off Dimond Boulevard.
Three Sam’s Club locations in Alaska closed in 2018 after parent company Walmart Inc. announced it was closing about 60 warehouses across the US.
According to reports at the time, Walmart’s decision was based on the company’s need to better align the Sam’s Club business strategy with that of its locations. In Alaska, the high cost of doing business in the remote state was also named as a factor.
[Earlier coverage: In Fairbanks and rural Alaska, Sam’s Club closing is a ‘major blow’]
The Tikahtnu Commons Center, in which Sam’s Club is located, is owned by North Anchorage Real Estate Investors.
The company includes the Brownman Development Company in California and CIRI, the Alaska Native Regional Corporation, in much of Southcentral Alaska.
The building owners did not respond till Friday morning.
Francis McLaughlin, the municipality’s senior planner, said Costco plans to enter into a lease agreement with the owners of the property.
After Sam’s Club closed its Alaska stores, the previously vacant building served as an emergency food distribution site operated by the Food Bank of Alaska, following a donation from Walmart for the use of the building.