MGM Ford Lincoln Sales Ltd. has been selling vehicles at 3010 Gaetz Ave. for more than 40 years. That tradition should continue for many more, after Red Deer’s municipal planning commission approved plans for a new dealership building there.
The two-storey, 42,615-square-foot facility is slated to go up west of MGM Ford Lincoln’s existing premises, with work expected to begin within weeks.
“It’ll be a 14- to 16-month build period,” said Don Leeb, the dealership’s general manager, after the commission granted site development approval for the project on Wednesday.
Steve Chow, buildings director with project engineer Genivar Inc., added that the new building should be ready for occupancy by the end of next year.
MGM Ford Lincoln’s new premises will be much bigger, said Leeb, with the dealership’s service bay count increasing to 32 from 17.
“We’ll have a lot more room in the shop, as well as customer lounge areas and comfort areas.”
A snack bar, children’s play space and Internet access will be among the new amenities available to customers, he said.
The showroom area will also increase in size, said Leeb, with a separate lounge and showroom for the Lincoln brand — something that doesn’t currently exist between Calgary and Edmonton.
The service department will gain a drive-through area, so customers won’t have to exit their vehicles when coming in, he added. And five bays will be dedicated to no-appointment service.
Leeb estimated the total cost of the new building, including equipment, at between $8 million and $10 million.
“It’s a huge commitment by the (Andy) Goodacre family,” said Leeb, referring to MGM Ford Lincoln’s owner.
But, he continued, the changes are necessary to ensure appropriate customer service.
MGM Ford Lincoln will operate out if its existing building until the new facilities are ready for occupancy. The old premises will then be demolished and paved over.
“As much as possible there’ll be no change in what we’re doing,” said Leeb of the construction phase. “There might be a little bit of traffic congestion, but other than that everything should operate as normal.”
MGM Ford Lincoln has been at the site since 1970, when then owners Bob Goodacre and Ken McFarlane relocated their McFarlane-Goodacre Motors there. The two men had started the dealership a decade earlier after buying downtown Red Deer’s Hepworth Motors.