As you probably know, Toys R Us went out of business earlier this year, and because they had a penchant for free-standing stores, that means there is a LOT of empty real estate in prime retail locations sitting around empty.
So why not turn old Toys ‘R’ Us locations into gun ranges?
- Free-standing Toys R Us store are built on a pattern that tended to repeat itself, so you wouldn’t have to customize your renovations much from store to store.
- They’re solidly built: Everyone I’ve seen has been made of either tip-up concrete walls or concrete block.
- They’re usually in great locations next to shopping malls and major thoroughfares (although rezoning could be a hassle).
- They can be had for a song. Retail is dying, and so the list of people clamoring for those locations has to be quite short.
In case you haven’t noticed, there is a BIG gap in the gun market right now: We have nationwide chains of sporting good stores that sell guns, but the biggest chain of gun ranges (where you can actually USE those guns) is Shoot Straight here in Florida, which has a whopping eight locations (and to be honest, each and every one of them is VERY low-rent).
Someone (Glock? SIG? Action Target?) is going to do for gun ranges what AMF did for bowling alleys, and instill a standard level of service from one range to another so that the consumer understands the value proposition of what they’re getting before they walk in to shoot.
There’s probably a shuttered Toys R Us within an hour of where you are right now. Someone is going to SOMETHING with them, why not open a gun range inside of them?