By Tim Leeds
Whalen Tire's Havre shop will soon be in a new location - the Holiday Village Shopping Center.
"We will be up there March 10. That's our hope," manager Don Groven said. "We'll continue to be here until then."
Groven said the building Whalen Tire is located in has been sold, and the company was told it can no longer rent the location.
The owner of the building, Raymond Randolph of North Carolina, could not be reached for comment Wednesday or today.
Groven said the higher visibility and traffic at Holiday Village will help Whalen Tire, and Whalen Tire's presence there could benefit the mall.
"The mall is a viable part of our community and if we can get traffic up there and revitalize it, it will help everybody," he said.
The tire company will be located in the south half of the old Woolworth's location. The new location will be smaller than the tire store's current site, the old Western Warehouse building on U.S. Highway 2 East, but that won't be a problem, Groven said.
"We've got more space than we need now," he said.
Whalen Tire has four employees at the Havre shop, and plans to expand the staff at the new location, Groven said. The shop will be open 8 a.m. to 5 or 5:30 p.m. Monday through Friday and 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday.
Whalen Tire is now open 8 to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday and about 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturdays.
The shop could start opening for Sunday hours if the demand is there, Groven said.
"We're a service-oriented business, so if there is a need we'll be open to that," he said.
The Whalen Tire corporation is investing about $50,000 in the move, including remodeling the Holiday Village location and buying state-of-the-art equipment like new alignment equipment and tire balancers.
The corporation, which is headquartered in Butte, has 12 stores in the state, Groven said. The Havre store opened 15 years ago.