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Hewitt's seeking new home for Latham store

Hewitt's seeking new home for Latham store

Owner has sold site of existing store to next-door auto dealer, Keeler
Hewitt's seeking new home for Latham store
Colin Thorne stocks organic seeds at Hewitt's Garden Center.
Photographer: Marc Schultz

LATHAM — Hewitt’s Garden Center is looking for a new home in Latham.

The owner of the land the garden store chain leases at 1129 Troy-Schenectady Road has sold the site to its neighbor to the east, Keeler Motor Car Co. Hewitt's has a bit more than six months to vacate.

“We’re actively looking for a replacement,” said Ryan Cullinan, president of Hewitt’s, on Wednesday. He plans to stay right on or near Route 7 in Latham and has a few potential locations in mind, he said.

“Worst case, I have some backup plans for a temporary location,” Cullinan said. The search is complicated by the shortage of readily developable land in the area. It has been heavily built up since Hewitt’s opened at that location in the early 1980s.

January and February are a slow time for Hewitt’s: It sells some salt and shovels, but the stores are pretty quiet.

However, it has worked hard to build its market during the rest of the year: seeds and young plants in the spring, yard supplies in the summer, pumpkins and cleanup supplies in early autumn, Christmas trees and accessories in late autumn.

Sprinkled along the way are critical weekends, such as Mother’s Day and Memorial Day, when the stores are packed with shoppers.

As such, the August move-out deadline is not ideal.

But it could work out, Cullinan said, if Hewitt’s is able to close the doors on the old store at the close of business one evening and open the doors of a newer, better store the next morning.

He said the owner of 1129 Troy-Schenectady Road gave him sufficient notice before the sale.

“We knew this was coming,” he said. “They’ve been pretty fair about it.”

Cullinan said he doesn’t know what plans Keeler Motor Car Co. has for the site.

The company, which sells new BMW, Honda, Mercedes-Benz and Mini vehicles from the site, did not return a call seeking comment for this story.

Hewitt’s operates seven other stores from Glenmont to Queensbury. The original store and the main office are on Route 50 in Glenville.

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