The former Kmart building at 1100 McCann Road has been converted into Simply Stor-It Longview and opened within the past two weeks with 566 storage units available for rent.

“We’ve had five customers already in a week,” manager Cheryl Buys said Thursday. She said the climate-controlled facility is geared for people “who are moving, downsizing, need extra space in their houses, and businesses.”

Buys previously managed Tyler-based owner United Properties Group‘s self-storage facility in Katy.

Simply Stor-It has gated access from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily for individual customers and 24 hours for businesses, she said. Customers may drive into the building and unload or retrieve contents of their storage units.

Storage units range in size from 5-by-5 feet to 10-by-30 feet. The five large units are drive-up units while the smaller ones are accessible through hallways.

Houston-based Longview Development LLC planned the conversion of the 105,000-square-foot Kmart building and hired Boone & Boone Construction of Tyler to do so. Kmart closed in March 2016.

The former Kmart site also has been proposed for the 180-unit Parkside Apartments.

“We are waiting to receive building plans,” Vance Wyly, office manager for the Longview Development Services Department, said Friday.

For more information about the storage facility, visit

Dollar Tree rebranding

A Family Dollar store at 2604 Gilmer Road that closed April 29 has reopened and rebranded as a Dollar Tree, which is under the same corporate ownership.

More Family Dollar stores in the area might be rebranded as well, including a recently shuttered store at 112 N. Main St. in Lone Star that reopened Thursday as a Dollar Tree.

Gary Philbin, president and CEO of Dollar Tree Inc. in Chesapeake, Virginia, said in a statement in March the company closed 84 Family Dollar stores during the fourth quarter of 2018 and announced plans to renovate at least 1,000 stores this year.

“Approximately 200 Family Dollar stores will be re-bannered to Dollar Tree, and we plan to close as many as 390 Family Dollar stores this year,” he said at the time.

Dollar Tree stores are open daily and offer an assortment of merchandise priced at $1 or less, spokeswoman Kayleigh M. Painter said in an email.

She would not say whether other Family Dollar stores in the Longview area would be rebranded. As of May 4, Dollar Tree operated 15,264 stores across 48 states and five Canadian provinces, along with a network of 23 U.S. distribution centers, under the brands of Dollar Tree, Family Dollar and Dollar Tree Canada.

Arlette Jacob, who shopped at the Dollar Tree Monday on Gilmer Road, said the store seemed bigger than the Family Dollar it replaced. She said she did not patronize the store when it was a Family Dollar, and instead shopped nearby at Dollar General.

Nurse practitioner clinic

Kelly Johnson, a nurse practitioner with 10 years of experience in emergency medicine, is making plans to open White Oak Family Medicine clinic at 103 S. White Oak Road.

“It will be a general family practice” that accepts patients of all ages, she said. “I want to be able to provide my patients with a one-stop place to have all of their needs addressed.”

Johnson said she is working on “establishing relationships with insurance companies” and hopes to open the clinic in August or September.

She said she graduated in November from the nurse practitioner program at the University of Texas at Arlington, where she also earned a nursing degree. She has lived in White Oak for eight years and is married to a police officer.

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— Business Beat appears Sunday. If you have items for the column, email to newstip@; mail to Business Section, Longview News-Journal, P.O. Box 1792, Longview, TX 75606; or call (903) 237-7744.