By Thomas J. Sullivan–
Interior renovation of the 40,000-square-foot former Toys R Us store at 7800 Greenback Ln. in Citrus Heights has already begun, in preparation for Hobby Lobby opening a new store at the site.
Diane Gudahl, Hobby Lobby special projects manager, confirmed on Wednesday that a lease at the location was recently signed. The company’s press office said an opening date had not yet been set, but projected the store would open “some time in the fall of 2019.”
The store will be the second Hobby Lobby location in the immediate area, with the nearest store currently at 1815 Douglas Blvd. in Roseville. Toys R Us closed its Citrus Heights store last year on June 29, following the company filing for bankruptcy.
Property records show the former Toys R Us building was constructed in 1978 and sits on a five-acre parcel, with a large parking lot in the front. The property is owned by the Cordano family, which owns property and development companies in the Sacramento region.
The Citrus Heights Hobby Lobby store is expected to bring 35-50 new jobs to the area, Gudahl said. Once an opening date is set, the company will make hiring information available at its web site at careers.hobbylobby.com.
According to the company, an estimated 65 new Hobby Lobby store locations are expected to open in 2019 nationwide, and another 16 stores will relocate, creating approximately 2,500 – 3,000 jobs. Hobby Lobby currently has over 840 stores across the nation.
Hobby Lobby, headquartered in Oklahoma City, is primarily an arts-and-crafts store but also includes hobbies, picture framing, jewelry making, fabrics, floral and wedding supplies, cards and party ware, baskets, wearable art, home accents and holiday merchandise. The privately owned retailer has approximately 32,000 employees and operates in 47 states.