The Andersons should look outside the traditional demographic box and take a closer look at the return on investment for locating in the Oregon I-280/SR 2 area. Traditional retail demographics do not include the thousands of good paying jobs employed by major Oregon businesses. The major Oregon employers are: St. Charles Hospital, Bay Park Hospital, the BP Refinery, and Toledo (Sunoco) Refinery. These and other businesses collectively employ thousands of people. Many of the employees live outside the Oregon demographic area and are not included in the demographics used by retailers.
In addition, Rt. 2 is one of the heaviest traveled roads in the Toledo Metropolitan area. Navarre Ave. SR 2 is the gateway to fishing, boating, Maumee Bay State Park, beaches, islands, birding, and Cedar Point. SR 2 also serves as the route to Davis Besse which regularly has many contract employees that take up residence here for months at a time - the same is true for BP. These travelers spend money but are not in the retail demographics for Oregon.
I find it intriguing that one of the last K- Marts to stay open in the Toledo Metropolitan area is on SR 2. K-Marts in Maumee, Perrysburg, and many other locations closed while the Oregon location remains open. Bob Evans has two restaurants in close proximity. Oregon went from one national chain motel to three with a fourth motel on SR 2 under construction.
Years ago, I participated in discussions to recruit the Andersons to locate in Oregon. I remember that at an early meeting, the Andersons’ representative looked at me and said there was little to no market here. I challenged him to take zip codes at the Talmadge and Maumee stores, believing that many of us east of the river shopped at one of the two Andersons stores. They did the zip code and other analysis and decided to come to the I-280/SR 2 market.
The Andersons knew then that locating at Woodville Mall was not the best eastern location. But Woodville Mall was so cheap, they went there. Their first preference was on SR 2 and/or where Meijers is located. Once again, we need to convince them that an Oregon location will be profitable.
I urge those who want the Andersons to stay in the I-280/SR 2 corridor, to ask the Andersons to look outside the traditional demographic box. Ask the Andersons to take a look at the thousands of employees who have good paying jobs that come to Oregon daily but do not live here. Ask them to look at the SR 2/I-280 traffic counts that show huge seasonal variations in the spring, summer and fall that bring people thousands of people looking for fresh foods, seasonal items etc. that the Andersons offer. These tourists are looking for places to stop along the way and spend money. The Andersons store has the home town feel that tourists find attractive. Many 'tourists' coming here have repeat trips. They may be going fishing on a charter, or to a boat they own docked in the area, or visit Put n Bay and the Islands, or have a second home that they commute to. There are also thousands of birders who come annually with their spotting scopes, binoculars and cameras for spring and fall migration.
Please call 419-893-5050 or write Dan Anderson at 459 W. Dussel, Maumee, Ohio 43537, to let him and his family know that we want the Andersons in our community. Ask them to look outside the traditional retail demographic box. Let them know there is additional expendable income in Oregon that will yield a good profitable return on at an Oregon location.