Harbor Freight to open in former Benny’s in East Wareham

Oct 31, 2018

A major tool retailer is coming soon to a currently vacant 23,325-square-foot building on Cranberry Highway.

California-based Harbor Freight Tools recently announced plans to open inside the former Benny’s store, located at 3066 Cranberry Highway. In September 2017, Benny’s officials said the family-owned, Rhode Island-based retailer would close all 31 stores after 94 years of business.

In December 2017, the Carpionato Group of Rhode Island announced plans to invest $100 million into redeveloping the vacant buildings. At the time, the company said it was seeking a mix of national, regional and local retailers and restaurants to move into the properties.

The $100 million price tag, which did not include the cost of buying the properties, included renovations to building exteriors, parking lot and drainage upgrades, and will address any environmental concerns with the buildings.

According to Harbor Freight Tools President Eric Smidt, the company plans to open the Wareham store in January.

“We are honored by the warm welcome that has been extended to us in this community,” Smidt said in a statement.

To staff the store, the company held a job fair in the Wareham Free Library and has been advertising for sales positions on job search website LinkedIn. Harbor Freight is the nation’s largest discount tool retailer with 900 stores across the country. Each store stocks automotive, air power and shop and hand tools.