Being a resident of the Mooresville, NC Area, I'm somewhat disappointed at the lack of convenient access to two things:
1) A friendly, non-pretentious over the counter, non-big-box type of gun shop (not a pawn shop(not that there's anything wrong with that)).
2) An indoor/outdoor handgun/rifle shooting range within a reasonable distance.
I don't let the distance I have to drive hold me back from regular trips to the only ranges available in our area. The closest I can find is no less than a 40 minute drive. But in these economically challenged times, it would be nice to save some gas money and spend a little more on practice ammo and/or more guns.
I also crave the friendly knowledgeable type of service that can only be provided by someone that really cares about your individual needs and matching you up with the right equipment.
Bottom line? I am seriously considering going over the top and taking the risk of opening up such a facility in the Mooresville, NC area. So, I ask you. would I be making a worthwhile investment?
I can't tell you if your idea is over the top but you wouldn't have hardly any competition in the area. The best gun store for service and knowledge I've found is Hyatt's on Wilkerson in Charlotte but their prices are high. Gander has a pretty good selection but the staff are just box retailers (except for their gunsmith, I think he is knowledgable). The indoor range would be way cool. I'm a member at the Iredell FOP in Troutman and they have a pretty good facility but all outdoors. I think the hoops you'll have to jump through to build an indoor range are going to be huge with lead abatement and safety. Keep us posted if you decide to to do something. I would defintely like to see a good gun shop and indoor range in the area.
As far as your idea of opening a gun shop; I do believe you will be starting a viable buisness. I will be moving to the Mooresville area in the next few months. Upon my exploration of the area I was indeed unhappy with the lack of the smaller kind of shop that you have described. A local area buisness as michael1614 said would not have much competition so you would not have much of a worry of going under. Also as I am prior military I know that many come to that area for school (UTI I believe) and as far as I am concerned were all gun nuts. LOL. So with just these few things I would say "go for it" even though my opinion may be biased on the fact that I want/need this. Also any kind of custom work would also be a big +. Hope this has been helpful.