Dollar store planned for M.L. King Boulevard area in Chattanooga

Dollar store planned for M.L. King Boulevard area in Chattanooga

May 21st, 2013 by Mike Pare in Business Around the Region

Crowds fill M.L. King Boulevard during the Bessie Smith Strut in this file photo.

Photo by Dan Henry/Times Free Press.

Another dollar store is slated to open in downtown Chattanooga with its owner banking on potential plans to breathe new life into M.L. King Boulevard along with the growing UTC campus.

"We're looking at the development of the MLK area. A lot of new business should be coming in," said Mike Hayes, who will own the store going into the Park Town @ 301 Building at MLK and Houston Street.

Hayes said he's hopeful of a late June opening in the 3,100 square feet he's leasing on the ground floor of the building, formerly known as Renaissance Square.

The EPB contractor said he's investing about $50,000 in the new business, which he says will be open every day from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Hayes said the venture will be an independent dollar store not affiliated with companies such as Family Dollar or Dollar General.

Troy Potter, who owns the two-story building, said Hayes is taking about a third of the leasable space on the ground floor.

"It's a good fit," he said, adding he's hopeful of leasing the rest of the space soon. The top floor remains residential space.

Potter said he bought the building after Regions Bank repossessed the $3 million mixed-use development from the 28th Legislative District Community Development Corp.

He said MLK has potential, and he foresees more businesses moving into the area.

"I see UTC growing in that direction," Potter added.

Hayes said he will employ six people in the business.

In 2011, Regions took over the building from the 28th Legislative District Community Development Corp. The group filed for relief under bankruptcy protection in August 2010 after it failed to sell any of the commercial space in the structure and was unable to pay back much of the project cost, including a $1.2 million loan from Regions.