Culligan Water readies for new location

Published 10:07 am Wednesday, October 29, 2008

While the country’s attention is riveted on local, state and national elections Tuesday, Noah Hawkes will be moving.

As general manager of Culligan Water Conditioning in Austin, Hawkes was faced with a problem when the city announced his business was one of several that had to move as part of the jail and justice center acquisition process.

Hawkes toured several buildings in town before finding a perfect fit during the first week of September. Unfortunately, he needed working offices by Nov. 5. Opportunity came knocking when he found a vacant building — the former Used-A-Bit Shoppe, a thrift store at 1308 Eighth St. N.E. — and a construction company who could promises Hawkes offices in two weeks — The Joseph Co.

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“(We) are being demolished the day after we move,” Hawkes said.

The renovations will cost about $150,000, he said, and the business will use both acquisition money and their own to fund the construction.

“The city’s been really good working with us,” Hawkes said.

Culligan’s long-time location at 407 Second St. N.E. is in an older building, so Hawkes perceives the move as a positive.

“This was a perfect opportunity to find a new building,” he said.

The new building was mostly wide-open, so renovations are underway for new offices, and new blacktop was laid. An added bonus is a second newer garage on the property. Renovations will continue after the employees — the “Culligan Man,” Kevin Swank; a service technician; route driver; office manager; and Hawkes — move in Nov. 4.

Culligan, which services all of Mower County, sells and services water softeners; treats well and city water to bottle water quality; and delivers coolers and salt to businesses and homes.

Culligan Water Conditioning’s office is open from 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. with servicing 24 hours a day, seven days a week. For more information, call 433-3737 or visit