UPDATE: A BJ's spokesperson confirmed to The Daily Sun the Port Charlotte store will open Friday, Jan. 21.

PORT CHARLOTTE — It looks as if BJ’s Wholesale Club on Cochran Boulevard is about to open.

Aside from finishing touches at the gas pumps and landscaping, construction appears complete at the soon-to-open warehouse store in Port Charlotte.

The company recently announced the new, 103,120-square-foot warehouse store encompassing 20 acres, will open later this month but did not confirm a specific date.

Last year, when the firm announced it was coming to Port Charlotte, representatives for the company said the grand opening would take place by Black Friday, 2021.

The store is next to PetSmart on Cochran Boulevard. Other stores in the vicinity are Kohl’s and Home Depot.

Dave Gammon, executive director of the Charlotte County Office of Economic Development, said in an earlier interview the site consists of 26.5 acres, but some of the land consists of rights of way and a retention pond.

The store consists of a 3,092-square-foot liquor store and a 3,235-square-foot tire center, with the remaining 96,793 square feet for general merchandise and food. Workers are coming and going to the store, and through sliding glass doors — with racks and shelves being put in place.

The landscaping was partially finished.

BJ’s Wholesale Club will join Sam’s Club as one of two such warehouse stores in the vicinity. BJ’s’ other competitor is Costco Wholesale. BJ’s Warehouse Club is no stranger to Florida where it has more than 30 locations, including Cape Coral, Fort Myers and University Park in Sarasota. Nationwide, there are more than 230 BJ’s clubs and more than 150 BJ’s gas stations. The firm has 6 million members, according to the company’s website. A basic membership card costs $55 for a year. A membership trailer is set up adjacent to the new BJ’s, between Cochran Boulevard and Quesada Avenue.

Prior to the opening, it is offering membership specials. The $55 annual membership fee comes with a $40 digital gift card loaded to the membership card, and the $115 BJ’s Perks Rewards card, which gives 2% cash back on most BJ’s purchases, comes with an $80 digital gift card.

BJ’s is traded on the New York Stock Exchange, symbol BJ.

BJ’s was started by discount department store chain Zayre in 1984, in Massachusetts. Its name was derived from the initials of Beverly Jean Weich, daughter of Mervyn Weich, the president of the then-new company.

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