Ralphs’ closure doesn’t hurt other shops | TheUnion.com

Ralphs’ closure doesn’t hurt other shops

A month after the closure of the Ralphs Grocery Co. store in Glenbrook Basin, neighboring businesses are echoing no ill effects by the vacancy.

“I’m still waiting to see. Eggs, milk and liquor – I know I’m selling a lot more of those,” said Jerry Eilers, manager of Long’s Drugs down the way from the empty store.

And he’s seeing no negative effect in other areas so far. “It means they weren’t doing a darn thing for me,” said Eilers, referring to the principle that anchor stores draw customers for other businesses in a shopping center.

Eilers said he is anxious for Safeway to move in because he expects the new store would bring in more people to his store.

Safeway Inc. plans to open an upscale grocery store in the former Ralphs building in the spring or summer of 2007.

Susan Copeland, owner of the Flour Garden Bakery for 25 years, said she has noticed no significant change in her business, allaying worries she had harbored before the closure. “I’m relieved to say it hasn’t had any drastic negative impact.”

Jennifer Nunnink, who was dropping off movies at Blockbuster, said she continues to shop in the Gold Country Center even though she can no longer buy her family’s groceries there. She was anxious for the grocery to move in, she said.

At Launderland, washing machines quietly hummed as laundry attendant Tammy Fleharty took a break from her work. More customers come than ever, due to the closure several weeks ago of a laundromat in a nearby shopping center.

“It’s just a real quiet parking lot to look at now” in front of the former Ralphs, Fleharty said.

Of The Union readers polled in January, 11.1 percent said they shopped at Ralphs. In the same poll, 27 percent said they shopped at S.P.D. Markets, 25.4 percent shopped at Raley’s Supermarket, 11.4 percent shopped at Albertsons Supermarket, and 5.7 percent at Safeway. The rest shop at other area markets.


To contact Staff Writer Laura Brown, e-mail laurab@theunion.com or call 477-4230.

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