GRDadof3

Meijer and Rockford to build new grocery store on the near West Side

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" Rockford said "overwhelming requests for a neighborhood grocery store" led to conversations with Meijer, a "long-time partner" of the firm. Two blocks from the planned Meijer location is a Duthler's Family Foods. "

 

So they demanded a neighborhood grocery store when these people clearly had one already a mere 2 blocks away?

Yet Heritage Hill, East Hills, Wealthy Street, Heartside, and the developing area south of Wealthy are in clear need of one, and has had a large empty lot on the corner of Wealthy and S. Division that has gone begging for one for almost 10 years?!

Seriously?

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Loved the headline until I saw the location, really underwhelming.

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2 hours ago, GR_Urbanist said:

" Rockford said "overwhelming requests for a neighborhood grocery store" led to conversations with Meijer, a "long-time partner" of the firm. Two blocks from the planned Meijer location is a Duthler's Family Foods. "

 

So they demanded a neighborhood grocery store when these people clearly had one already a mere 2 blocks away?

Yet Heritage Hill, East Hills, Wealthy Street, Heartside, and the developing area south of Wealthy are in clear need of one, and has had a large empty lot on the corner of Wealthy and S. Division that has gone begging for one for almost 10 years?!

Seriously?

A lot easier to pull this off on land that they already own, then to piece together a large enough collection of parcels to pull it off on the SE side. Where in East Hills or Heritage Hill would you build an urban Meijer store with enough room for onsite parking? 

The West Side "super block" is 3.2 acres, which is huge in urban dimensions. 

 

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When i've been in Duthlers its feels dingy and run down.  I don't know the last time money was put into it. It's like the last of a dying brand.  I'm not sure the target demographic and current demographic of downtown and the Westside really want to go there.  I know the location isn't our ideal,  I still think it's a huge shot in the arm for the Westside and Downtown.  Noone ever talks about the Family Fare on Fulton which isn't too far away from Eastown/East Hills/Cherry Hill itself.  I wouldn't be surprised to see Spartan Nash invest in that as the area continues to gentrify.

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6 minutes ago, MJLO said:

When i've been in Duthlers its feels dingy and run down.  I don't know the last time money was put into it. It's like the last of a dying brand.  I'm not sure the target demographic and current demographic of downtown and the Westside really want to go there.  I know the location isn't our ideal,  I still think it's a huge shot in the arm for the Westside and Downtown.  Noone ever talks about the Family Fare on Fulton which isn't too far away from Eastown/East Hills/Cherry Hill itself.  I wouldn't be surprised to see Spartan Nash invest in that as the area continues to gentrify.

There's going to be a huge collection of people living on the West Side, in addition to a large neighborhood of single family homes nearby. I think it's a great location. 

The next logical place for a grocery store would probably be Monroe North, and probably Wealthy and Division if they ever get their act together over there. No matter where you put ONE store, there will be people inconvenienced by its location. 

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Seems like a lot of negativity for something people list as one of the biggest needs downtown. I'm hoping it's a runaway success and other grocers locate near downtown. Plus, if Orion lands a smaller market or large Pharmacy, it's going to give a lot of options for full shopping and fill in trips. 

I agree with GRDad, no matter where they put this, it would less convenient for other neighborhoods, but it seems like a huge win to me. 

It'll be be interesting to see what else they're planning for the site. It sounds like more than a Meijer store is planned. 

Joe

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Good news for the West Side but the GRBJ headline is somewhat click-baity as the site is a bit outside what most consider to be downtown.

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9 hours ago, Quercus said:

Good news for the West Side but the GRBJ headline is somewhat click-baity as the site is a bit outside what most consider to be downtown.

I know a lot of people who call East Hills downtown. Even Eastown. I think the average GRBJ reader would probably consider anything in the city of GR: downtown. 

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9 minutes ago, GRDadof3 said:

I know a lot of people who call East Hills downtown. Even Eastown. I think the average GRBJ reader would probably consider anything in the city of GR: downtown. 

Agreed. We've know several people who, when home shopping, kept saying they wanted to buy a house downtown. Come to find out they were talking about East Hills the whole time. 

We just moved from Chicago to a house we bought Ottawa Hills and I can tell you right now this neighborhood is nowhere near feeling like downtown anywhere! That said we have our moments where as soon as we are in East Hills we are like "I guess we don't live that far from downtown." We've run into the same conversations as we've worked to narrow down the location for a store. All perspective I guess. 

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Well it fine and great that after years of lobbying, that Meijer is doing their store on the west side and we are calling it a downtown grocery (because you can see downtown from there?).  Using that criteria, then the old Meijer on Fuller and Michigan was a downtown grocery too, and that was only a stones throw away from the existing Family Fare on E. Fulton, which I guess can be a downtown grocery as well since people mistake Eastown for downtown now.

I just don't get how Meijer ultimately came to the conclusion that this is where this store should go.

I'm just not thrilled that while one area has been the loudest trying to get a grocery, that we now have to hope that this one on the west side (near a not great, but still, existing grocery, and not far from the old Ball Park Grocery that closed, and within a short drive from a Meijer megastore) receives enough business that Meijer wont get squeamish on any new ones, nor will they declare it a failure and never do one again. It isnt "negativity", it's a pit in the stomach because people have been screaming for a real downtown grocery, not one that is "sort of" downtown, or close enough, or that we should just feel happy for the people on the west side.

Ok. Well I hope they take advantage of it because if they dont, then those of us that are nowhere near it will just be out of luck because there likely arent any other large chains that will take the risk for a long time.

Edited by GR_Urbanist

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Kiss Duthlers goodbye.  That's a big lot they occupy and in a key location ripe for redevelopment.

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3 hours ago, GR_Urbanist said:

Well it fine and great that after years of lobbying, that Meijer is doing their store on the west side and we are calling it a downtown grocery (because you can see downtown from there?).  Using that criteria, then the old Meijer on Fuller and Michigan was a downtown grocery too, and that was only a stones throw away from the existing Family Fare on E. Fulton, which I guess can be a downtown grocery as well since people mistake Eastown for downtown now.

I just don't get how Meijer ultimately came to the conclusion that this is where this store should go.

I'm just not thrilled that while one area has been the loudest trying to get a grocery, that we now have to hope that this one on the west side (near a not great, but still, existing grocery, and not far from the old Ball Park Grocery that closed, and within a short drive from a Meijer megastore) receives enough business that Meijer wont get squeamish on any new ones, nor will they declare it a failure and never do one again. It isnt "negativity", it's a pit in the stomach because people have been screaming for a real downtown grocery, not one that is "sort of" downtown, or close enough, or that we should just feel happy for the people on the west side.

Ok. Well I hope they take advantage of it because if they dont, then those of us that are nowhere near it will just be out of luck because there likely arent any other large chains that will take the risk for a long time.

Because 3.2 acres, that's why.  That much space available under one owner in the middle of city doesn't happen often, and given that it's currently a more lucrative part of town, of course this will move quickly.  Nothing against South Division, but it's clear that whole part of town is a slower and more sustained effort.  And that's great, it's coming along, it'll get there.  Tapestry Square has barely even started building up residences yet.  Don't let "perfect" be the enemy of "great."  Anytime 3.2 acres happens, you take that opportunity.

No negativity coming from me.  This store couldn't be in a better location - it will serve downtown, and it will be in full view of freeway traffic on 196, with no doubt a giant sign facing it.  I just really, really, really hope they don't plan a giant surface lot like Tapestry Square - if this a real urban format store, they will put parking underneath or on the roof.

4 hours ago, thebeerqueer said:

This parcel is a huge tract of land that has been underused and blighted for decades. I'm interested to see how its re-imagined. 

Having spoke with numerous near westside residents about these issues at recent housing forums, it is disconcerting that there are no voices critical of turning a bunch of vacant lots into a freakin' grocery store. :thumbsup:

 

Edited by RegalTDP
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1 hour ago, RegalTDP said:

No negativity coming from me.  This store couldn't be in a better location - it will serve downtown, and it will be in full view of freeway traffic on 196, with no doubt a giant sign facing it.  I just really, really, really hope they don't plan a giant surface lot like Tapestry Square - if this a real urban format store, they will put parking underneath or on the roof.

Having spoke with numerous near westside residents about these issues at recent housing forums, it is disconcerting that there are no voices critical of turning a bunch of vacant lots into a freakin' grocery store. :thumbsup:

 

I'm pretty sure based on the articles the scope of the project Rockford has in mind is mixed use.  I read office, and residential mentioned in their plans.  That leads me to think multiple floors encompassing the majority of the footprint.  It would also make me think underground/lined parking garage.   It sounds as if you're envisioning more of a big box style format with parking.  Did I miss something?

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33 minutes ago, MJLO said:

I'm pretty sure based on the articles the scope of the project Rockford has in mind is mixed use.  I read office, and residential mentioned in their plans.  That leads me to think multiple floors encompassing the majority of the footprint.  It would also make me think underground/lined parking garage.   It sounds as if you're envisioning more of a big box style format with parking.  Did I miss something?

Not really big box, but every urban format store I see around here is either a stand-alone or side-by-side attached to its development.  The wording of the article is vague enough to envision either/or.  I'm sure Meijer will have a say in what they want.  And regardless, even the "mixed use" parts of Division/Wealthy still have surface parking galore.

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31 minutes ago, RegalTDP said:

Not really big box, but every urban format store I see around here is either a stand-alone or side-by-side attached to its development.  The wording of the article is vague enough to envision either/or.  I'm sure Meijer will have a say in what they want.  And regardless, even the "mixed use" parts of Division/Wealthy still have surface parking galore.

The only mixed use part of Division and Wealthy I know of is Tapestry Square no?   Everything else going up in the city as mixed use is fairly verticle, including Rockford's current mixed use projects.

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Don't forget the big hole in the ground at Division and Weston

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27 minutes ago, MJLO said:

The only mixed use part of Division and Wealthy I know of is Tapestry Square no?   Everything else going up in the city as mixed use is fairly verticle, including Rockford's current mixed use projects.

That was kind of my point, I don't want to be promised "mixed use" and end up with the layout Tapestry Square is planning.  And just because Rockford may envision one single mixed-use building, they still have to work with Meijer, who has its own vision for how to make the store appeal to shoppers.  Not saying it won't happen, but I'd be surprised if they wanted to be part of a single vertical structure, and the article doesn't confirm either way.  Maybe they do.  I don't know.  We'll see.

Oh great, now i'm starting to sound negative.  I'm not though!  This is all very exciting.  Exciting, I tell ya!

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I understand what you're saying.  I guess what I'm picturing is a mixed use more along the lines of Arena place where it looks like multiple buildings on one lot with a single parking structure connecting it all.  I'm not thinking a lot of height either.  That's just as speculative as anything.  It'll definitely be interesting to see what they end up doing(if anything at all).

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I went to a Target in Chicago the other day and it was two massive floors. First floor parking, with an entrance, escalators and elevators. The second floor was basically the same format of Target we see in the suburbs. It was quite impressive (in size). And not particularly close to a train station so I think most people either walked or drove. 

https:[email protected],-87.6432328,3a,75y,308.38h,92.02t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1srn_HKEBuFYelLjjqG9_zNw!2e0!7i13312!8i6656!6m1!1e1

Sounds like they are thinking more mixed use than this development (good), but a BIG Meijer could probably fit on that property. 

Joe

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11 hours ago, GRDadof3 said:

I know a lot of people who call East Hills downtown. Even Eastown. I think the average GRBJ reader would probably consider anything in the city of GR: downtown. 

 

11 hours ago, GVSUChris said:

Agreed. We've know several people who, when home shopping, kept saying they wanted to buy a house downtown. Come to find out they were talking about East Hills the whole time.

Really? So are they clueless about the neighborhood names? That strikes me as very strange. I'd love to know why there is so much confusion regarding GR's separate neighborhoods and business districts.

I'm definitely not trying to rain on the parade. This announcement is great for the neighborhood and is a reflection of how far GR has come in the last decade. I guess when I saw "downtown" in the headline I pictured the center city.

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