Last year the managers of the South Hill Manito Center said a new Ross Dress for Less store would open this summer, taking over the large, empty former Gottshalks building.
Now the plan is to open the store before the start of the back-to-school shopping season. Ross is a clothing retailer and wants to take advantage of that buying season.
That plan was slowed down for two reasons. Removal of asbestos took longer than expected, after crews came into the building and began the first stages of demolition.
And the store design process was extended due ongoing discussions between Ross corporate officials and the architecture team, Spokane's Bernardo Wills.
John Bennett, the president of manager Black Realty Management, said the asbestos removal added “maybe just two weeks” more to the conversion timeline.
The design review process was a larger factor in the delay, Bennett said. “They (Ross Stores) are very involved in the design review,” he said.
Vandervert Construction is handling the demolition and preparation of the Ross portion of the building. Bennett said the plan is to hand over the building to Ross by the end of August. An opening date by Ross has not been set, and efforts to get more information from Ross Dress for Less have not succeeded.