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Harbor Freight confirms mid-summer opening in Franklin

Last updated on March 23, 2021

After sitting empty since Kmart announced it was closing in 2018, the largest building in the Westgate Plaza shopping center will soon have a new occupant.

“We’re very excited about our new location that will be coming to Franklin in late to mid-summer,” said Craig Hoffman, Director of Communications & Content for Harbor Freight. “This location will be our 1st in Macon County (and our 46th location in North Carolina. We think it will be more convenient for our customers in the community, as they currently have to drive about 45 minutes to Seneca SC or to our location in Henderson which we opened last fall.”

Harbor Freight Tools is a privately held discount tool and equipment retailer, headquartered in Calabasas, California, which operates a chain of retail stores, as well as a mail-order and e-commerce business. The company employs over 20,000 people in the United States and has 1,000 locations in 48 states.

According to Hoffman, Harbor Freight had been working to open the Macon County location for some time, and are looking forward to seeing it completed.

“We’ve been looking to open a location in Macon, and specifically Franklin for some time, but we always believe in making sure we have the best possible location for our customers—one that offers easy access, good visibility and ample parking,” said Hoffman. “We also want to make sure we have the right space—in this case approx.. 25,000 square feet. We believe that one competitive advantage we have over our big box stores in this category is that we are far more compact, and easier to shop—while still offering our huge assortment of tools and equipment.  A Harbor Freight store is easier to browse, and since many of our customers are professional tradespeople, easier to come in, pick up exactly what you need and head out to work or the jobsite.

According to Hoffman, the location at 395 Westgate Plaza in Franklin meets all those requirements.

The new store means new jobs for local residents. “We also hire locally—this location will bring between 25-30 new jobs to the community—so we look for a community that offers a great pool of applicants to join the Harbor Freight family,” said Hoffman. “We want to be the best place to work in retail, and we offer very competitive salaries along with a full benefits package and the opportunity to advance in our growing company—we currently have more than 1100 locations in the US and are added new locations weekly.”

Interested applicants can apply online at and search “Franklin NC”.

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