Ollie's Bargain Outlet to open this week in Ypsilanti Township
The 36,000-square-foot store in Ypsilanti Township’s Roundtree Plaza shopping center is set to open at 9 a.m. July 31. Ollie’s is located at 2375 Ellsworth Road, east of the Walmart store.
“It’s right in the same center as the Walmart is, it’s a busy road, and there are other good tenants in the shopping center,” said Jerry Altland, Ollie’s vice president of real estate. A space formerly occupied by both Busch’s Fresh Food Market and Sheena’s Marketplace.
Altland said the space has been renovated and the company hired 45 to 55 employees to staff the store.
The warehouse-style Ollie’s Bargain Outlet stores typically display inventory on pallets and moveable fixtures, with caricatures and quirky signage separating the store into 19 categories. Departments include hardware, books and stationery, carpet, domestics, food, toys and seasonal goods.
“We’re in the bargain business and we’re in the name-brand business,” Altland said. “We love buying name brands.”
The Pennsylvania-based retail chain operates more than 140 stores in 13 states, with plans to open about 20 to 30 stores per year, according to its website. A store in Lansing also opens on July 31.
“We’re focusing on the east side of Michigan today — the Detroit area and its surrounding communities,” Altland said. “That makes some sense, it’s a good population up there. Next year, I don’t know what we’ll do yet in the state of Michigan. We’ll probably open a couple stores.”
Altland said the chain expects some crossover traffic with the Walmart located in the same center, but he called Ollie’s its own “destination store.”
To celebrate the opening of the Ypsilanti Township store, Ollie’s will have NASCAR driver Jeff Burton on-site at 10 a.m. July 31 to meet with fans and customers. Beginning at 7:30 a.m. on opening day, Ollie’s will hand out 250 tickets to people who will be able to meet Burton.