WATERVILLE — At least one new business, Ulta Beauty, is scheduled to open in the JFK Plaza off Kennedy Memorial Drive later this year in a space that is being renovated next to Tractor Supply.
Ulta is a chain of beauty stores headquartered in Bolingbrook, Illinois, that carries cosmetics, fragrances, nail and bath products, hair care and other goods. Many of the stores include a salon.
While the company offered few details about plans for the business, Crystal Carroll, director of public relations, confirmed a store is coming to the plaza.
“We’re actually still in the early phases of planning for this location so are unable to share specific details,” Carroll said in an email. “The opening is scheduled for later this year, so I can follow up with more information as they become available.”
Founded in 1990, Ulta originally was called Ulta Salon, Cosmetics & Fragrances. The nearest Ulta stores to Waterville are in the Augusta Marketplace, Bangor Parkade and Maine Mall in Portland.
Discussions on social media platforms have mentioned that an Old Navy store also is planned for the plaza but that could not be confirmed. The company’s press department responded to emails seeking confirmation with generic messages that did not include specific information. A call placed Friday to Grossman Development Group LLC, one of the owners of the plaza, was not returned.
Garvan Donegan, director of planning, innovation and economic development for the Central Maine Growth Council, said he could not comment on the Ulta project or the rumors of an Old Navy store.
“With that said, we are expecting to see exciting new retail and business 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 as a result of its high visibility, direct proximity to a key transit corridor (i.e., I-95), some of the highest Annual Average Daily Traffic (AADT) in the region, larger square footage facility options, proximity to both the downtown district and city service center amenities and institutions, and, generally speaking, sustainable economic development that results in follow-on retail activity.”
Kimberly N. Lindlof, president and CEO of the Mid-Maine Chamber of Commerce and executive director of the Growth Council, also could not confirm the rumors, and said she had not spoken with anyone from those companies or with the owners of the plaza.
Businesses already in the 151,000-square-foot JFK Plaza, situated on 14.14 acres, include Hannaford, T.J. Maxx, JoAnn Fabric and Crafts, Mirakuya Sushi & Steak House, the electronics store Aaron’s and Tractor Supply.
Workers recently have been renovating the space next to Tractor Supply that years ago was used occasionally as an L.L.Bean seconds store.