Lowe’s soon to be in all 50 states

Lowe’s has its sights set on two approximately 120,000-square-foot new stores in Vermont, according to news reports, a move that would mark the retailer’s entrance into all 50 U.S. states.

According to the Burlington Free Press newspaper, construction has begun on a Burlington, Vt., store, which is slated to include a 30,816-square-foot garden center.

As HCN reported in January 2006, Burlington, Vt., real estate firm KeyPoint Partners helped complete the lease on the second store in Essex, Vt; that location is set to include a 29,000-square-foot garden center. It is unclear which store will open first.

At its annual analyst and investor conference in Charlotte, N.C., company executives said despite problems in the housing market, Lowe’s will go ahead with expansion plans.

The company reported that it plans to open 135 to 145 stores in 2008, and that it will continue to grow areas like installed sales. About 40 of those stores will be built in the Northeast.