Hallock’s sells city building

NEW HAVEN — After 31 years in Westville, Hallock’s has sold its Whalley Avenue building and plans to move by the end of the year.

“We’re considering several sites in Greater New Haven,” said President John L. Fast. “We’d like to stay in the city of New Haven.”

Fast said the principles of the H.P. Hallock Co., who are members of the Fast family, decided to sell the three-story building and find a one-story facility, for the convenience of customers.

The 20 employees know about the pending move, Fast said. The company employs another 30 people at its branch stores in Branford and West Haven.

Hallock’s, founded downtown in the early 1920s, sells appliances, furniture and television sets. The Fast family bought the business in 1940.

The Church of Scientology bought the 35,000-square-foot building for $1.5 million.

Carol Yingling, a church minister, said the church plans to move its Connecticut headquarters into the building. The current headquarters is in 9,000 square feet of leased space just down the street.

“We are really busting out at the seams,” she said. “I’m looking forward to having a place to hold community meetings.”

Yingling said the move will allow the church to potentially quadruple its staff of 35.

“We need four times that many to make full use of the new space,” she said.

The church is headquartered in a former Masonic temple, and the Hallock’s building at 949 Whalley Ave. was built as a Masonic temple in 1926.

Fast said Hallock’s will start a moving sale next month.

Considered New England’s oldest appliance store, Hallock’s added furniture to the showroom in 1964.

The main Hallock’s store was at 75 Orange St. downtown for decades, but had to close in 1992 due to the redevelopment of Ninth Square. The owners at that time made the Whalley Avenue store, which opened in late 1972, the flagship store.

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