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Penz Automotive’s Spring Valley location to move onto former Peterson Motors site

After 15 years, the former Peterson Motors site will be home to a car dealership once more as Penz Auto's begins its move into Spring Valley.

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The former Peterson Motors in 2002 with the building maintaining the original paint and design it had back in 1969 when it opened.
Contributed / Wes Peterson
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SPRING VALLEY — The former site of a retired, longtime Spring Valley automotive dealership will soon have a new tenant.

Penz Automotive Group has purchased the former Peterson Motors building at 1140 N. Broadway Ave. and will reconstruct the building into the new Spring Valley Chevrolet and Buick dealership.

Peterson Motors originally opened in Spring Valley in 1969 and closed operations in 2008. The company was founded in 1955 in Lanesboro by Gordy Peterson, who opened a Ford and Mercury dealership in town.

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The building has since been owned by Grafe Auction Company, based out of Stewartville. Penz Automotive has been working for the last year to purchase the 4-acres site the old dealership provides to increase their lot size in Spring Valley from 50 parking spaces to 200-250 parking spaces.

“It's right at the entrance of the town and it's in a good location," said Todd Penz, co-owner of Penz Automotive. “It's going to be, I'd say, double or triple the amount of space that we currently have.”

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Wes Peterson, son of Peterson Motors founder Gordy, said he was happy to see the site return to its automotive dealership roots.

“It's going to be sad to see the building go, but I'm happy that Penz's Automotive Group is investing in Spring Valley," Wes Peterson said. "Gordy may turn in his grave now that a Chevy 'Bow-Tie' is on his old property, but he would be proud to see our community continue to advance forward.”

Chevrolet Buick of Spring Valley
The new location of Chevrolet Buick of Spring Valley on Wednesday, Aug. 31, 2022, in Spring Valley.
Traci Westcott / Post Bulletin

Even with the old Ford dealership turning into the rival Chevy dealership’s new home. The continuation of motor sales in Spring Valley will keep many residents of the town and surrounding rural area from driving further to find a brand new vehicle.

“Chevrolet has been part of the Spring Valley community for over 40 years. And to put a new building in that community, people are excited for it," said Penz. "It's good for Spring Valley and it's also good for Fillmore County, because we're the only new car franchise in Fillmore County.”

The demolition of the former Peterson Motors building is scheduled to occur during the month of September. Penz Auto Group hopes for construction of the new building to be completed by late spring or early summer of 2023. Benike Construction will be partnering with Penz Auto for the construction of the new auto dealership building and lot.

Theodore Tollefson is a business reporter for the Post Bulletin. He is originally from Burnsville, Minn., and graduated from the University of Wisconsin-River Falls with a bachelor's degree in journalism in December 2020. Readers can reach Theodore at 507-281-7420 or ttollefson@postbulletin.com.
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