Lowes Companies, Inc.
Lowe's Companies, Inc. is a retailer of a complete line of home improvement products and equipment. The company has more than 850 stores in 45 states, serving more than seven million do-it-yourself and commercial business customers each week. A Fortune 500 company with over 110,000 employees and approximately $26 billon in sales annually, Lowe's is the world's second largest home improvement retailer and the 14th largest retailer in the U.S.
In preparation for the development of a retail site in Kailua-Kona, with Lowes as one of the tenants, the Hawaiian Development Corporation built a very large and obtrusive rock wall fronting the property on the highway, slowed traffic with construction vehicles on the only access road, and began the blasting of the large lava bed that the stores were to be built on. Located next to a housing development called Malulani Gardens, many of the homes received damage as a result of the blasting. This damage included: cracks in the walls, constant dust blown into the houses, rock fragments in the streets, and finally, a large boulder in the living room of one of the residents. This last incident finally brought the underlying tension to a head. Because of a sign misleadingly indicating Lowes as the developer, much of the residents frustration was directed towards the company. Lowes was viewed as a mainland big-box retailer with no regard for the local community, and so PMCI was referred by a national public relations firm as a Hawaii-based company with the resources available to diffuse the crisis.
First, PMCI met with the developers to gather background information, assess the situation and determine Lowes level of responsibility. PMCI then outlined and executed a strategy to address some of the communitys concerns. PMCI arranged for the Lowes representative to meet with several State Representatives, Councilmembers, the Mayor and Kona residents to open up lines of communication, and give Lowes a face in the community. After these meetings, PMCI was able to help Lowes alleviate many of the concerns citizens had concerning the location of the store, noise, traffic, blasting, and landscaping. The misleading sign was removed, a new traffic light was installed, a community outreach program involving canoeing was initiated, and the Lowes project was able to proceed as planned.
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84 North King St., 2nd floor
Honolulu, HI 96817
Phone: 808-536-5688 Fax: 808-536-5720