Woodland RV dealership may employ 80

Portland-area-based B. Young RV plans full-service RV dealership in Woodland.

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LONGVIEW — A Milwaukie, Ore.-based R.V. dealer is developing a new, 14-acre dealership in Woodland that could create more than 80 jobs at full build-out.

B. Young R.V. plans to break ground on the $8 million project this fall at 1986 Atlantic Ave. It is projected to open next summer.

Owner Bruce Young said Tuesday that he’s working with an architect to finalize plans on the layout of the dealership, and he hopes to enter the permitting phase in the next two months.

The company purchased a vacant 27-acre lot in December, although the dealership will only occupy 14 acres, Young said. The remaining 13 acres could be used for other development, but there are no firm plans yet.

Young started the company in 2010 with the idea that consumer purchases of R.V.s would pick up as the economy recovered from the recession. As his customer base grew, Young noticed many of shoppers were traveling from Southwest Washington.

“We wanted to be close to that customer base … and also offer more products and services to Southwest Washington,” Young said.

Young said he selected the Atlantic Avenue spot because of its visibility from Interstate 5 and because Cowlitz County officials were “very inviting.”

“There’s so many recreational areas to visit up in that area. It seems like it would be a very good fit for our company,” he added.

B. Young’s Milwaukie location has 74 employees, and some of those employees could come over to work in Woodland, Young said.

At the start, the Woodland dealership will likely begin with about 40 employees and ramp up employment as business grows, he said.

B. Young services R.V.s and sells new and used travel trailers, motor homes, diesel pushers, fifth wheels and toy haulers. The Woodland location will be three times larger than the Milwaukie dealership, 16803 S.E. McLoughlin Blvd.

Young said he hopes his dealership will spur additional developments in Woodland.

“It’s a nice little city. I think when people start investing in it a little more and put more development into it, and it’s going to catch fire,” he said.