LISBON - As anyone who has driven on Route 68 between Canton and Ogdensburg in the past several months knows, the Mort Backus and Sons car dealership has undergone a radical transformation.
Since April the 4835 Route 68 dealership has added a 5,000-square-foot expansion that includes a two-lane drive-through service area, additional office space and a brand-new showroom.
On Monday the dealership will finally move into the new facility for a soft opening after spending the summer working out of trailers in the parking lot.
The project is 95 percent done, and we are concerned about weather and customers getting up to our temporary trailers, General Manager Michael Backus said. We have decided to go forward and open.
Mondays soft opening will see the new customer lounge and showroom, which still requires some finishing touches, getting use.
Our temp facilities worked out well; our employees were super and our customers were very understanding, Mr. Backus said. Were anxiously looking forward to making the switch to the new facility.
This years building project was the seventh and biggest expansion the dealership has seen since opening in the 1950s, Mr. Backus said.
The expansion also brings the dealership up to national standards set out by General Motors as part of a branding effort.
In December the final piece of the project will be complete as the drive-through service area is opened, Mr. Backus said.
Up to four cars at a time will be able to drive into the service area, which will be heated during the winter, where they can talk with employees about the work they need done before heading into the customer lounge.
The dealership employs 34 people full time and sells new and used GM vehicles.