The Free Press, Mankato, MN

Tim Krohn

Date: Saturday, August 28, 2013

NORTH MANKATO — The former Ray’s Market building in Upper North Mankato, most of which has sat empty in recent years, is being renovated and will house a Dollar Tree store, featuring a grocery and freezer aisle.

Also leasing space in the complex will be a logistics company.

Subway, which has been in part of the building, will remain.

A bank had earlier vacated one space in the building and American Family Insurance is moving from the building down Commerce Drive to a strip mall containing Erbert and Gerbert’s.

Kyle Smith of Tailwind Group said the new businesses are scheduled to open Nov. 1.

Dollar Tree, which operates a store near Old Country Buffet in Mankato, will lease 10,000 square feet in the retail complex.

Ray’s Market grocery store closed more than four years ago with a few businesses leasing part of the building. The Glen Taylor Trust purchased the Ray’s building and leased some of the remaining space out for storage.

Ray’s was built with controversial and heavy subsidies and the city lost money as it — and a former Ray’s Market downtown — struggled and closed.

Tailwind purchased the property this past spring.

Smith said the building is being totally renovated and will look more like a traditional retail center with separate entrances for each business.