An old Hy-Vee Supermarket on Oak View Drive soon will be converted into a strip center that will house a cheerleading and gymnastics studio and eventually other businesses.
Developer Kevin Hooker of Validus Group, working in partnership with Jim Pearson, said he hopes to move his cheerleading and gymnastics studio, Elite Cheer, into the 62,000-square-foot building. The building has been vacant since 2010, when Hy-Vee relocated to a new, larger store at 14591 Stony Brook Blvd.
Elite Cheer serves about 900 kids per week, mostly girls, training them in competitive cheerleading and gymnastics. The business also offers martial arts classes.
The Oak View Drive loop struggled with several large vacancies in the area but in recent years has seen buildings filled and even expanded. The former Linens N' Things, for example, now houses a bowling alley and fun center, the V.
Hooker said he hopes to close on the building by next month and move in by April of next year. The plan, endorsed Wednesday by the Omaha Planning Board, calls for a mixed-use property with the possibility of up to nine tenants.
Hooker said the space was attractive to him because of its large parking lot and proximity to its current location at 144th Street and West Center Road. “We need more space. We're completely out of room.”
Elite Cheer will take up about 27,000 square feet of the space. Hooker said he plans to update the facade with paint and signage. Interior renovation will include adding dividing walls as well as restrooms and a viewing room.
Hooker said he and Pearson are also looking at a second phase of the project that could include adding lots or expanding the strip center.
The developers are seeking other tenants and hoping for something complementary to the business, such as a sports facility for boys or a restaurant.
“We don't want tenants competing against each other, but we also don't want to put something in there that doesn't fit with the kids that are going to be there every night.” He added: “We'd like to see something new” to Omaha.