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We got a sneak peek at the mini Target on Hillsborough Street. Here’s what to expect.

Raleigh’s Hillsborough Street ‘Target’ed

Nationwide retailer Target opens a "small-format" store across the street from the sprawling NC State campus.
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Nationwide retailer Target opens a "small-format" store across the street from the sprawling NC State campus.

The first thing you’ll notice when you enter the new Target on Hillsborough Street is a whole lot of red. Red for Target and red for N.C. State.

The store, one of the 28 small-format Targets the retailer is opening across the country this year, had a ribbon-cutting ceremony at the store on Tuesday night. It’s only the second mini Target to open in the state. (UNC students got their own Target on Franklin Street in Chapel Hill in July.)

A student jazz ensemble greeted dozens of VIPs checking out the aisles of food, clothing and electronics. Cupcakes and candy were served in Target red colors – fitting for the Wolfpack customers.

Everyone else will get their first peek at the inside of the store Wednesday morning when the retailer has its “soft opening.”

“I’m super excited,” said store team leader Erica Taylor of Raleigh, who graduated from NCSU and went to work for Target 10 years ago. Taylor, who was at the ribbon cutting, said she has been waiting for this to happen since the retailer first considered putting a small store in downtown Raleigh some years back. “This is very special,” she said.

Here’s a closer look:

▪ The store is at 2512 Hillsborough St. To get your bearings, it’s across the street from the D.H. Hill Library and in the building that was occupied until a year ago by a longtime local landmark, The Alley. Wood panels from some of the bowling lanes have been incorporated into the interior design as a nod to the popular hangout.

▪ Small-format Target stores are about six times smaller than a regular Target store; approximately 23,000 square feet in this case. It’s far larger than a convenience store, but a lot is crammed into the narrow aisles in the split-level interior.

▪ Shelves are stocked with goods catering to students and neighbors on the go: quick meals, organic produce, apartment and dorm furnishings, beauty aids, men’s and women’s apparel and accessories, portable technology devices, and Wolfpack gear.

▪ There will be a CVS Pharmacy and Starbucks coffee shop inside, and online orders can be picked up there.

▪ The store will officially open at 7 a.m. Wednesday. There will be a grand opening at 8 a.m. Sunday, with reusable plastic bags given to the first 1,000 customers.

▪ Store hours will be 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. Sundays, 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. Mondays through Fridays, 8 a.m. to 11 p.m. Saturdays.

▪ Parking: There is a 36-space parking deck beneath the building, good for 30 minutes at a time. You enter it from the front of the store on Hillsborough Street.

Craig Jarvis: 919-829-4576, @CraigJ_NandO

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