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Pep Boys Invests in New Distribution Center in California

Pep Boys has announced plans to lease a 600,240-square-foot build-to-suit distribution center in San Bernardino, Calif., at the site of the former Norton Air Force Base, which is being redeveloped for industrial use. The site is now called AllianceCalifornia. Scheduled to open in May 2005, the new distribution center will replace Pep Boys’ existing three-building distribution center complex in Los Angeles.

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PHILADELPHIA — Pep Boys has announced plans to lease a 600,240-square-foot build-to-suit distribution center in San Bernardino, Calif., at the site of the former Norton Air Force Base, which is being redeveloped for industrial use. The site is now called AllianceCalifornia.

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Scheduled to open in May 2005, the new distribution center will replace Pep Boys’ existing three-building distribution center complex in Los Angeles.

The 600,240 square-foot warehouse will improve throughput and storage capacity, as well as serve more stores, said Stuart Rosenfeld, vice president of distribution for Pep Boys.

“We made a strategic decision to relocate and build a new, larger and fully-equipped distribution center in San Bernardino,” said Rosenfeld. “The spaciousness and design of the new facility will enable us to streamline our operations, increase our throughput and storage capacity, serve additional Pep Boys stores, and expand if necessary. This investment will improve the overall efficiency and growth of our company, enhance day-to-day operations, and ultimately benefit our customers.”

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The new distribution center, which is being developed and constructed by Texas-based Hillwood, will be significantly larger than the current Los Angeles facility. The additional space will create several advantages for Pep Boys. The new distribution center will comprise – in one facility – nearly 175,000 more square feet than all three L.A. warehouses combined and will provide additional height (30 feet vs. 24 feet), which equates to a 63 percent increase in cubic capacity. Also, 25 additional loading docks (65 vs. 40) will allow for a substantial increase in throughput capacity, the company said. The existing L.A. facilities process 300 million feet of merchandise, equaling 600,000 units weekly. Because of the increased throughput capacity, the new facility will serve 165 stores — 151 stores in its existing service area, as well as another 14 stores in the Phoenix market. The design of the new facility will allow for an additional 200,000-square-foot expansion, if necessary.

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Currently, Pep Boys’ Los Angeles distribution center complex employs 240 full-time and part-time associates. Pep Boys said it expects many managers and associates to relocate 60 miles east to San Bernardino when the new facility opens. The Los Angeles operations will transition in systematic stages in early 2005 before closing. Associates who are not interested in relocating to the San Bernardino facility will be offered separation packages. The company said it expects to hire more than 100 associates for the new facility, employing about 265 in total.

In addition to southern California, Pep Boys operates distribution centers near Atlanta, Ga.; Dallas, Texas; Indianapolis, Ind.; and Chester, NY.

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