IDAHO FALLS, Idaho (KIFI/KIDK) - Costco opened a new 180,000 square foot store on Friday in Idaho Falls.
"We are checking out the largest Costco in Idaho," said Costco shopper, Tammy.
Carts filled with excitement went in and carts full of merchandise came out.
Store manager Greg Gillingham tells us the large crowds were expected at the wholesale retailer. "For a memberships we actually had over 7,000 people sign up for this location already. So it's as busy as about what we expected. It's been a real strong surge here early on, I think it'll be steady throughout the weekend."
The new location has been in the works for several years Gillingham says, but once signed off on, it only took 110 days to get it built from the ground up.
Masks, social distancing signs, and a sanitation station helped customers feel safe, but still, opening during a pandemic came with other challenges.
"Some of our suppliers struggled to get some product here on time, but at the end it all showed up and we were able to open up on time," Gillingham said.
"It's so amazing and they did a great job getting everybody in and you felt safe," said shopper, Sherri.
Besides bringing a new wholesale retailer in the area, Costco has also provided jobs, and a hopeful boost to the economy with more people coming in town to shop.
"We've been in twice, going in for a third, because we have filled out cart too much. So we have to come unload and load everything into the car and then go back in," said shopper, Sheri.
Shopping at this store does require a membership that comes as low as $60 a year. Besides the store, Costco also offers a gas station, an optical department, and a food court for their members.
The new Costco brought in over a hundred jobs to the area, and although they’re not hiring right now, Gillingham tells us they plan to look at more applications soon for the holidays.