FORT FRANCES—After news last August that west-end properties were purchased by Loblaw Properties West Inc. and an Extra Foods grocery was going to be built there, the company now is saying the new grocery store won’t be opening here until next year.
“We are going through some internal approvals, and once that’s done we’ll be going out to tender,” said Lori Stene, director of public affairs for Westfair Foods Ltd., which is part of Loblaw Companies Ltd. along with Loblaw Properties West Inc..
“We’re looking at having the store open in 2008,” she added. “I can’t really narrow it down more than that, but that’s what we’re looking at right now.
“We should know more in a couple of months.”
Construction of a new store usually takes about six months.
Stene noted the company has done market research here, as well as engineering work and preliminary drawings of a new store.
While she couldn’t comment on any details of the store, Stene previously had said that it would sell fresh produce, meat, deli goods, dry goods, groceries, and some general merchandise (like health and beauty products).
As well, early plans submitted to the town during the re-zoning application process showed the building possibly could be nearly 44,000 sq. ft. in size, along with a large parking lot and gas bar.
Last February, council passed a bylaw to rezone the property located between Witherspoon’s One Stop and Wal-Mart from M2 (heavy industrial) and C3 (highway commercial) to C2 (general commercial).
Then in May, council gave draft approval to a site plan control application based on the preliminary site plan for development of a large-scale retail grocery store and gas bar located at 1108-1112 King’s Highway.