The Zellers at the Village Green Centre will become a Target store in 2013.

The Zellers at the Village Green Centre will become a Target store in 2013.

Target aims to open in Vernon in 2013

Vernon is on target for a major American retailer.

The Zellers in the Village Green Centre will be converted into a Target store in 2013.

“It’s good news and we are extremely happy,” said Scott Adam, Village Green Centre general manager.

“Target is going to drive a lot of traffic.”

Target Corporation, which acquired the leases of 220 Zellers in January, analyzed data on retail performance, demographics, competition and market potential to identify communities that should get a Target store.

Vernon is one of 105 outlets that has been selected to be part of the first phase of Target stores in Canada. At this point, it is the only one in the Okanagan.

“We want to open stores that will be successful in the community,” said Molly Snyder, a spokesperson at Target’s headquarters in Minneapolis, Minn.

Six to nine months prior to opening as Target stores, outlets will be closed for remodeling.  About $10 million will be spent on renovations at each store.

It’s not known when the Vernon Target will open.

“We plan to open the first ones in 2013 but there is no set time for the opening of stores,” said Snyder.

A detailed schedule of individual store opening dates will be made available at a later date.

It’s not known what the conversion to Target will mean for existing Zellers staff in Vernon, but Snyder says that will be a personal decision for those employees.

“We are really excited to enter the employment market in Canada,” she said.

Adam is confident that Target will provide new retail opportunities for North Okanagan residents and will provide a benefit to Village Green Centre businesses.

“Target is a major anchor and it will definitely drive a lot of traffic to the rest of the merchants in the centre,” he said.