Madison officials break ground on Target, Shoppes of MadisonPublished 11:15am Monday, March 21, 2011
Madison leaders and city officials broke ground Monday morning on The Shoppes of Madison, which is being anchored by a Target store.
Work began on the project as soon as it was finalized two weeks ago, but the groundbreaking ceremony, which was hosted by the Madison Chamber of Commerce, officially launched construction on the project Monday.
“This is a very, very proud moment,” said Chamber Member Investors Manager Lou Galipeau.
Galipeau said when he joined the chamber two years, Mayor Paul Finley spoke of a “target” project he wanted to complete.
Galipeau said he thought it was it when the city broke ground on new HEMSI operation, and then again for the Madison Hospital, and then again on the new high school.
But none of those were it, he said.
“This is the ‘target’ right here,” Galipeau said.
The Shoppes are being built off U.S. 72 E., just down the road from the Madison Hospital, and are comprised of 28 acres, including the 135,000-square-foot Target and an additional 125,000 square feet of other retailer space.
Developer GBT CEO George Tomlin joked that there is going to be “less soybeans than we had before,” as the construction has begun on the former soybean field, but he said the project will be well worth it to the city and its residents.
“In one year from now from the spot we stand, we should have construction completed and doors open for business,” Tomlin said.
Tomlin said the Shoppes will employ approximately 400 full-time and part-time workers, as well as producing $80 million in annual gross sales thanks to businesses like Target.
“Madison is very fortunate to have Target coming into their city,” Tomlin said. “Target is a great corporate partner.”
Finley said by adding businesses and money to the sales tax base, businesses like Target are, in turn, adding to the quality of life for Madison residents.
“It all works together,” Finley said.
Finley thanked his staff, the city council and especially city Director of Community Development and Planning Amy Furfori for their efforts.
“I am so proud of our team. We did this in a time of economic downturn,” Finley said. “I can’t wait for a year from now to see The Shoppes of Madison come into play.”