Thompson’s True Value temporarily relocating to Marshalltown Mall

T-R PHOTO BY MIKE DONAHEY A crew from Terracon works to draw soil boring samples from property owned by Dave and Kathy Thompson of Thompson True-Value. The Thompsons will be building a new store on site.

Add Thompson’s True Value to the list of downtown businesses temporarily relocating to the Marshalltown Mall.

Co-owner Dave Thompson said the business will occupy the mall’s north end next to Planet Fitness.

Thompson has advertised via two large red banners on their existing store they will be open sometime during the first week October. A moving company is in the process of transferring the store’s massive inventory from 109 S. Center St. to 2500 S. Center St.

Thompson’s is joining downtown neighbors Black Tire Bicycle Co. and McGregors Furniture.

They have relocated while awaiting completion of repairs to their downtown buildings damaged during the July 19 EF-3 tornado.

Thompson’s situation is also weather-related. They are leaving a building — believed to have been constructed in the 1950s — whose trusses broke sometime after a late April snowfall followed by heavy winds.

The fractured trusses caused the building’s north wall to lean dangerously outward. Thompson called Hay Construction of Marshalltown.

On June 1, they finished the installation of one set of steel beams on each side of the store’s front entrance, backed by tons of concrete block. The steel and concrete continue to support the north wall.

This required the Thompsons and staff to improvise with a drive-up hardware store, meaning customers stood at the front door and placed their order while customers waited outside. The tornado did more damage to the main building, as well as one adjoining, also owned by the Thompson.

While the Thompsons endure the challenges of moving the hardware store, they are looking forward to moving into a brand new store during the spring 2019, with a tentative opening of May 1.

A company was taking soil borings on the new site across the street from the old store. The new 14,000 square-foot, clear-span store will be a continuation of an enterprise begun

locally in 1985, when the Thompsons moved from Eau Claire, Wisconsin.

And Thompson’s roots with the company go back to 1972 to the family’s Eau Claire store.

“It will be super efficient energy-wise, and the layout will make the store seem much bigger,

Dave said. “We are seriously considering putting in a drive-up.”

Thompson said all work will be done by local contractors.

Central Iowans can look forward to a Thompson True-Value well into the future. Dave said son Paul will eventually purchase the store from he and Kathy.

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Contact Mike Donahey at

641-753-6611, or mdonahey@timesrepublican.com