WATERVILLE – At least one new business, Ulta Beauty, is expected to open later this year in JFK Plaza off Kennedy Memorial Drive in a space that’s undergoing renovations near Tractor Supply.
Ulta is a chain of beauty shops based in Bolingbrook, Illinois that sells cosmetics, fragrances, nail and bath products, hair care, and other products. Many of the shops include a salon.
While the company offered few details on plans for the business, Crystal Carroll, director of public relations, confirmed that a store is on its way to the square.
“We’re actually still in the early stages of planning for this position, so we’re unable to share specific details,” Carroll said in an email. “The opening is scheduled for the end of the year, so I can give more information as soon as it becomes available.”
Founded in 1990, Ulta was originally called Ulta Salon, Cosmetics & Fragrances. The closest Ulta stores to Waterville are located in Augusta Marketplace, Bangor Parkade and Maine Mall in Portland.
Discussions on social media platforms have mentioned that an Old Navy shop is also planned in the square, but this cannot be confirmed. The company’s press office responded to emails seeking confirmation with generic messages that did not include specific information. A call made on Friday to Grossman Development Group LLC, one of the owners of the square, was not returned.
Garvan Donegan, director of planning, innovation and economic development for the Central Maine Growth Council, said he couldn’t comment on the Ulta project or the rumors about an Old Navy store.
“That said, we expect to see exciting new retail and commercial operations in 2022 and 2023 along Waterville’s Kennedy Memorial Drive …” Donegan said in an email. “In particular, the Kennedy Memorial Drive area is an attractive location for operations due to its high visibility, direct proximity to a key transit corridor (for example, I-95), some of the highest daily traffic. annual averages (AADT) in the region, options for larger structures, proximity to both the downtown district and the services and institutions of the city service center and, in general, sustainable economic development that translates into an activity of retail continues.
Kimberly N. Lindlof, president and chief executive officer of the Mid-Maine Chamber of Commerce and executive director of the Growth Council, also couldn’t confirm and said she hadn’t spoken to any of those companies or the owners of the plaza.
Businesses already in the 151,000-square-foot JFK Plaza, located on 14.14 acres, include Hannaford, TJ Maxx, JoAnn Fabric and Crafts, Mirakuya Sushi & Steak House, Aaron’s and Tractor Supply electronics store.
Workers recently renovated the space next to Tractor Supply which years ago was occasionally used as an LL Bean second-hand shop.