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Recreational Equipment, Inc. (REI), a national retail cooperative providing quality outdoor gear and clothing, today announced plans to open a store at the Santa Fe Railyard Project in Santa Fe, New Mexico, in 2007.
The Railyard project is a community vision that began with the city and the Trust for Public Lands purchasing a 50-acre rail yard in the city center in 1995. It will include a park, cultural museum, a farmer’s market and mostly locally owned retail shops.
Santa Fe Railyard Community Corporation has approved REI as a tenant in the retail portion of the project. REI has entered into lease negotiations with the Railyard Company, the developer, to lease approximately 28,000 square feet of retail space. The developer will not be seeking an amendment to the master plan to build the store.
â€œWe have heard the community concern that an accommodation for increased height would represent a significant change to the vision laid out in the master plan,â€ said Doug Schmidt, REI Regional Retail Director. â€œWe are working with the Railyard Company on an alternative design that works within that vision.â€
â€œWe are honored to be invited to be part of this special community project,â€ Schmidt said. â€œWe think it aligns well with REI’s commitment to community and parks.â€
REI is a cooperative, formed in 1938 in Seattle, and owned collectively by its members. There are currently 7,000 active members living Santa Fe, who have shopped online at REI.com or at REI’s store in Albuquerque. While anyone may shop at REI, members pay a one-time $15 fee and receive a share in the company’s profits through an annual member refund based on their purchases.
The store will bring 60 full and part-time jobs. REI has been listed by Fortune Magazine as one of the â€œ100 Best Companies to Work Forâ€ for nine consecutive years, landing at number nine on the list in 2006. REI offers affordable health insurance coverage to all employees regardless of the number of hours worked or length of employment.
REI is committed to promoting environmental stewardship and increasing access to outdoor recreation through education, volunteerism, gear donations and financial contributions. In the last two and half years REI has donated nearly $50,000 in grants to community groups in New Mexico associated with the Albuquerque store, including $13,000 in grants this year to Albuquerque’s Open Space Alliance to improve Albert G. Simms Parks and support youth involvement with city parks.
The store will provide REI’s full line of top outdoor brands of outdoor gear and clothing for camping, climbing, cycling, paddling, hiking, travel and snow sports. Store features will include a community room for clinics and community group meetings.
REI is known for knowledgeable employees who help select the right gear and offer information and useful tips on how to achieve a great outdoor experience. A gear rental department encourages customers to try new outdoor activities.
Founded in Seattle in 1938 by a group of mountaineers seeking quality equipment, REI now has 3 million active members and operates 89 retail stores nationwide, two online stores â€“ REI.com and REI-OUTLET.com â€“ and an adventure travel company, REI Adventures. Internet kiosks within the store provide access to REI.com and REI-OUTLET.com for product information and to order products not currently in stock. Nearly half of online customers choose REI Store Pickup, a service that allows customers to pick up online purchases at a store without a shipping charge.