A new 24 Hour Fitness club is expected to go in at the former Albertsons store at the Panther Lake Shopping Center. STEVE HUNTER, Kent Reporter

A new 24 Hour Fitness club is expected to go in at the former Albertsons store at the Panther Lake Shopping Center. STEVE HUNTER, Kent Reporter

24 Hour Fitness coming to former Panther Lake Albertsons store

Company submits permit application to city of Kent

Plans are in progress for a 24 Hour Fitness club to move into the former Panther Lake Albertsons store in Kent.

24 Hour Fitness submitted a permit application in February to the city of Kent for an internal tenant improvement for the building at the Panther Lake Shopping Center, at the northeast corner of Southeast 208th Street and 108th Avenue Southeast. The permit is under review by city staff. A fitness center is an allowed use in the zone.

The project is a 43,828 square-foot health club with new storefront openings, new skylights, new exterior door, swimming pool and spa, according to city planning department documents.

Portland-based Philco Demolition started work this month to gut the inside of the building to prepare it for a swimming pool, gym, locker rooms, weightlifting and exercise areas.

Albertsons closed the Panther Lake location in 2012. The shopping center includes a Rite Aid, Dollar Tree and KeyBank. The King County Library System plans to start construction this spring to convert the former Great American Casino (which closed in 2015) into a 6,000-square foot Panther Lake Library on the northwest corner of the shopping center.

A spokeswoman for 24 Hour Fitness declined to confirm or deny plans by the California-based company to open a Panther Lake location.

“We will not provide any comments or Q&A responses to your story at this time,” said Karen Bakula, senior manager of public relations for 24 Hour Fitness USA, Inc., in an email. “We will hold onto your contact information and if a club story opportunity comes up in that market in the future, we will reach out to you.”

Bakula declined to reveal any timeline about when the club might open.

24 Hour Fitness has a Kent location on the East Hill at The Marketplace at Lake Meridian, where it converted a former Albertsons store into a club. The chain opened its 20th club in the state in September in Tacoma. Crews converted a former Albertsons/Haggen store into a club. 24 Hour Fitness began in 1983 and has more than 420 locations nationwide.

Workers help clear out the inside of the former Panther Lake Albertsons store to make room for a 24 Hour Fitness Club. STEVE HUNTER, Kent Reporter

Workers help clear out the inside of the former Panther Lake Albertsons store to make room for a 24 Hour Fitness Club. STEVE HUNTER, Kent Reporter

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