PAnews.com, Port Arthur, Texas

September 25, 2013

Planet Fitness coming to Groves

Mary Meaux
The Port Arthur News

GROVES — A long vacant building in Groves will soon be home to the newest branch of Planet Fitness.

Trey Owen, operating partner for the Groves branch, has branches in Amarillo, Abiline, Lubbock and Midland with construction on a facility in Odessa ongoing.

The newest gym will be in the 5000 block of Twin City Highway in the former site of Hancock Fabric next to Big Lots.

“This is our first location is east Texas and we are excited,” Owen said.

Representatives of Flynn Construction are working on the facility and Owen hopes to have the gym open by the end of the year.

“We’ll have over 20,000 square-feet. There will be tons of cardio, over 50 treadmills, elliptical and stationary bikes, arc trainers,” he said. “We will be open and staffed 24 hours a day seven days a week.”

The Groves location will also sport a 30 minute circuit room, 12 minute ab or circuit room and a dedicated, discreet area for stretching. There will also be free fitness training for all members, he added.

A special black card membership will be available with extra perks such as free tanning, hydro-massage and more.

“We are known as a judgment free zone,” he said. “We provide a nice, comfortable, non-intimidating environment.”

Groves City Manager D.E. Sosa said Owen is investing about $1 to $1.2 million and the Groves Economic Development Corporation will assist as well with incentives around $40,000 for in-kind and reimbursement.

“But this only happens after the business opens and is established and we present receipts to the EDC board,” Sosa said. “It’s a pretty good deal.”

Planet Fitness will locate in one of the city’s major commercial districts near Big Lots and West End Hardware.

“This is just great for us,” Sosa said of the new business. “It will be open 24 hours a day and improve visibility and help improve the whole area.”

E-mail: mmeaux@panews.com

Twitter: MaryMeauxPANews