Larry Frattallone couldn’t believe it either. “Sixty-thousand people and no hardware store?” he said.
That was the case in Burnsville, where Frattallone and his sons, Tom and Mike, are expanding their Twin Cities chain of Frattallone’s Ace Hardware and Garden Centers with a new store at the Burnhill Plaza mall.
The 23,000-square-foot store, located north of County Road 42 and east of Irving Avenue, will be Burnsville’s first hardware store since George’s Hardware Hank at Highway 13 and Cliff Road. A “soft opening” was planned for this week.
The collective wisdom around town is that it’s been nearly a decade since George’s closed, said Burnsville Chamber of Commerce President Daron Van Helden.
“It’s kind of unheard of,” said Frattallone, of St. Paul. “I’ve got two stores in Minneapolis a mile away from each other. … and they’re both doing really good business.”
Of course, there are places nearby where you can get a lot of the products Frattallone’s Ace Hardware is selling.
“Everybody’s our competitor — Costco, Mills Fleet Farm,” said Frattallone, who opened his first store in 1975 and is opening his 17th at age 69. “But we’re a unique thing. We can do what they do, but they can’t do what we do.”
The difference, he said, is in the level of customer service and the array services the hardware store offers — everything from product assembly and computer color matching to repairing snowblowers and weed trimmers. read the rest (Source: This Week Live)