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STAFFORD TOWNSHIP, N.J. — The new 137,000-square-foot Target in this Jersey Shore community is filled with fresh additions — including the latest beauty prototype the retailer has been rolling out the past year — and is geared to be environmentally friendly.

An 8-foot section filled with beauty products using natural ingredients features Avalon, Jason, Alba, Giovanni, Dr. Bonner’s and Burt’s Bees. There is also an endcap of Burt’s Bees near the entrance of the beauty department, which is at the front of the store.

This story first appeared in the July 25, 2008 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.

The unit is located in a new open air retail strip with several other big-box stores on the site of two former landfills and meets the standards of the Silver LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Green Building rating system, Target said. It also features the retailer’s new recycled plastic shopping carts. There’s a park at one end of the store, whimsical bull’s-eyes imprinted into the sidewalk and appealing tower displays outside the entrance. The official opening of the space in the Stafford Park center is Sunday.

Physicians Formula’s Organic Wear is integrated in-line within the brand’s planogram. Organic Wear is situated next to Mineral Wear within the set. There are also Physicians Formula mineral kits and only one Bare Escentuals kit in this store — versus a major commitment to Bare Escentuals in nearby Target stores. Other natural touches include organic foods in an expanded Market food department and bamboo items in domestics.

The beauty treatment follows Target’s most recent developments, although it does not feature the professional skin care department found in an estimated 500 units that includes Origins, Clarins and Kiehl’s. However, the store does tout consumer-friendly signage such as graphics in hair and skin, helping customers self-select the right item for their needs. The unit has explanatory and captivating graphics, such as photography of kids dangling from the ceiling, promoting back-to-school.

The first aisle in the peg cosmetics department is devoted to 8 feet of Neutrogena, which leads into 16 feet of Maybelline. Across from that is 20 feet of Cover Girl and a 4-foot Rimmel assortment. The next aisle has NYC, 8 feet of Almay and a 16-foot Revlon department. The facing aisle holds 16 feet of L’Oréal. The color cosmetics assortment is rounded out with Sonia Kashuk, Bonne Bell Smackers and a house brand called Gossip. The back wall is devoted to fragrances, mostly in hanging clamshell packaging, and nail care including a large commitment to OPI nail color that was attracting interest during the party.

Throughout the store and especially in fragrance, Target has zeroed in on signage alerting parents about products for kids and teens. For example, youthful scents have a special sign in fragrances. The chain also offers cosmetics bags and totes.

Target has pared down its European skin care assortment, which launched two years ago, but added in-line space for Soap and Glory, Kaori, J.R. Watkins and the natural department. Skin care is dominated by Aveeno and the full lineup of Olay products.

This store has a clearly marked hair care department with signs identifying the major brands. Several salon brands found in other stores were not available in this unit. In hair color, Target has set aside space for new shades of the wildly popular Perfect 10, which are set to bow shortly.

Notable in this store is the extension of Target’s Market food concept. Although the unit is not a Greatlands design, food in this store features numerous cold cases. Other expanded departments include furniture, home storage and seasonal. There is also a new design at the checkout featuring express lanes for purchases of 10 items or less that stacked along the exit for easy egress and the addition of more cashier lanes. Curvy fixtures in apparel and a high-tech counter in electronics provide a more upscale ambience than older Target cabinetry. The store also ushers in new lines such as Shaun White apparel for men and boys, as well as a b-t-s shopping tool called TargetLists.

From a competition standpoint, Target is in a rapidly growing market. The store is the first mass merchant tourists will encounter as they exit the Garden State Parkway en route to popular Long Beach Island. There is a Kmart and Wal-Mart within a few miles, but both are older stores with less than up-to-date beauty prototypes. The closest department store is more than 40 miles away. In addition to vacationers the shopping center — which also has a Dick’s, a PetSmart, a Costco and a Best Buy — should attract people moving into the area.�

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