Source: Sherman Publications

Tractor Supply coming to Oxford

by CJ Carnacchio

May 11, 2011

Oxford Township’s development drought is finally coming to an end.

Tractor Supply Company (TSC) is expected to submit preliminary plans later this month for building a new 20,000-square-foot store (not including outdoor sales space) on the east side of M-24, just south of Meijer, on approximately 3.5 to 4 acres owned by the Clinton Township-based Aragona Properties.

“We’ll commence construction as soon as we complete the approval process,” said Don Kettler, of the Muskegon-based DMK Development, which is developing the Oxford TSC and has been working with the national chain for about 12 years. “If we get approval early enough this year, we’ll start this year.”

According to a May 3 e-mail sent to the township by Steve Witte, an engineer with the Grand Rapids-based Nederveld, Inc., the TSC preliminary plan is scheduled to be submitted May 23 and the developer hopes to gain final plan approval at the township board’s Sept. 14 meeting.

With more than 1,027 stores in 44 states, TSC is the largest retail farm and ranch store chain in the United States with revenues exceeding $3 billion. There are currently 65 TSC stores in Michigan including ones in Ortonville and Lapeer.

Founded in 1938 and headquartered in Brentwood Tennessee, TSC offers a wide variety of products including generators, workwear, animal feed and care products, power tools, riding mowers, lawn and garden products, pet supplies, livestock equipment, horse stalls and agricultural fencing.

TSC customers include farmers, horse owners, ranchers, part-time/hobby farmers, suburban and rural homeowners, contractors and tradesmen.

TSC’s been looking to open a store in Oxford since at least 2006.

“They’ve done a lot of market research and we’ve been looking at the market for many years,” Kettler said. “Tractor Supply gets a lot of calls from customers there saying, ‘We’d really love to have a Tractor Supply store and we’d like it to be a little closer, so we (don’t) have to drive so far.’ So, I know that a lot of it comes from customer requests and the other part of it comes from their market research.”

The opening of a TSC in Oxford would create new jobs, something desperately needed in this area.

“Typically, it’s around 15 people. Of those, about seven would be full-time,” Kettler said. “But in a market area this size, it could be as many as 20.”

Township Supervisor Bill Dunn’s definitely excited about TSC’s plans for Oxford.

“This is really great news,” he said. “For the township, it means more property tax revenues and another user to help pay off our water bond debt. For the residents, it means new jobs and a convenient place to shop.”

“Hopefully, this will spur more development in that area,” Dunn noted. “You’ve got a lot of land on M-24 just waiting for new businesses and you’ve got a township that’s willing to work with people to make it happen.”