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Jim’s Local Market before Planning, City Council this week

Two important steps in the development of the proposed grocery store at 25th and Nine Mile happen this coming week.

The Planning Commission will meet Tuesday at 1:30 PM to consider ordinances which would:

  1. conditionally rezone the properties from a mix of zonings to to the B-5C Central Business District (Conditional),
  2. close North 25th Street between Nine Mile Road and T Street,
  3. close four alleys in the development footprint, and
  4. declare surplus and to direct the sale of City-owned real estate located at 2534 Nine Mile Road for nominal consideration.

Ned Oliver at richmond.com is reporting that City Council’s organizational development committee will be discussing a grant from the city to bolster the project:

Richmond Mayor Dwight C. Jones is proposing a $500,000 grant for Jim’s Local Market, a grocery store planned for the corner of Nine Mile Road and North 25th Street in the East End.
[…]
The overall project is expected to draw $26 million in private investment and will employ 30 full-time employees and between 30 and 50 part-time employees, the mayor’s office said.

“This is not a case like most new groceries built in food deserts – they can be up to 100% subsidized,” says Mark Kronenthal, Chief of Staff to Mayor Jones. “Here the private support and the support of Bon Secours has reduced the need for public support by many orders of magnitude. The high level of private support makes the East End grocery an exceptional example of a relatively low request for public support. This project is to be celebrated.”

A piece in the Daily Press from earlier this year indicates that the city of Newport News spent close over $18 million on a similar food desert project (“$4.5 million on the development of the grocery store and up to $18.3 million on Brooks Crossing total”).

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Christine Greenberg
Christine Greenberg
4 years ago

Christine Greenberg liked this on Facebook.

Kathleen Sanders
Kathleen Sanders
4 years ago

Kathleen Sanders liked this on Facebook.

Rainie Bishop
Rainie Bishop
4 years ago

Rainie Bishop liked this on Facebook.

Michael Grabow
Michael Grabow
4 years ago

Michael Grabow liked this on Facebook.

Sandra Lubbers
Sandra Lubbers
4 years ago

Sandra Lubbers liked this on Facebook.

ray
ray
4 years ago

2. Close North 25th Street between Nine Mile Road and T Street.

Why? I mean, that’s a big deal.

Paul S
Paul S
4 years ago

@ray – presumably to make the grocery store more easily and safely accessible to all the surface parking? I personally don’t expect a TON of people to be driving to this store. If the overwhelming majority of the customer base for this store had easy access to cars they’d already be driving to other grocery stores rather than shopping at convenience stores. But many of them don’t have cars so this is largely seen as a food desert. Therefore the roughly 70 spots on the west side of 25th might be close to enough to serve the customer base. But… Read more »

Stewart Schwartz
Stewart Schwartz
4 years ago

I recommend people share their thoughts with the Planning Commission before or at their meeting today, and with Councilmember Newbille. I concur with Ray’s concern and appreciate Paul’s thoughtful assessment. It’s certainly a net positive to have a grocery store with the jobs it will bring to north Church Hill. In addition, it’s good that they frame Fairmont and Nine Mile Road with buildings built to the sidewalk. Still, I think we should ask for 25th to be kept open as a public street. We should also see if the number of parking spaces can be reduced. In addition to… Read more »

Remmie Chew III
Remmie Chew III
4 years ago

There where some discussions about the parking spots and the parking lots that would also set inside the grocer. But I feel that it was more of a wide”guess”conversation and not an actual “this is what is happening” process. I do agree however as a tree Stewart that we keep the trees and shade they provide and that they also try and build more greenery around the area as well. However I also agree with the “vehicle” point as well my wife and I have a vehicle and we go to many of the stores around the area or upper… Read more »

Emily Klinedinst
Emily Klinedinst
4 years ago

Emily Klinedinst liked this on Facebook.

BAF
BAF
4 years ago

Let them build it as they need to build it. I assume that the developers and business owners know what they need and have done the market research to determine how people will come to their store and how they need to be accommodated. I doubt they would pay to lay asphalt they don’t have reason to believe they would need.

Be glad they are willing to invest in the neighborhood rather than arguing over parking space counts. Small potatoes in the bigger picture.

Kathleen
Kathleen
4 years ago

Well said BAF!! I love trees but, Geez Louise, we need this grocery store!!

Brett Eastman
Brett Eastman
4 years ago

Brett Eastman liked this on Facebook.

Stewart Schwartz
Stewart Schwartz
4 years ago

All: As I mentioned I strongly support the grocery store and the good, healthy food and jobs it will provide, but I find that the city never does the detailed analysis it should to look at design options for plans and projects. I am an urbanist, strongly supportive of redevelopment with good urban form — buildings built to the sidewalks etc., and very pleased that this company is making this investment. But we should not discount the value of trees to our community – especially our large, old trees which provide shade, enhance property values, help manage stormwater, and calm… Read more »

Paul S
Paul S
4 years ago

>> “I assume that the developers and business owners know what they need and have done the market research to determine how people will come to their store and how they need to be accommodated. I doubt they would pay to lay asphalt they don’t have reason to believe they would need.” I support this project. But I don’t support BAF’s notion that developers and lenders always know what is best. One prime example I have first hand knowledge of. In the Columbia Heights neighborhood of DC the DCUSA mall was built with Target as the anchor. Target and the… Read more »

Jeff Breeden
Jeff Breeden
4 years ago

Jeff Breeden liked this on Facebook.

BAF
BAF
4 years ago

@8 & 9 I am sure developers have made errors in the past. Many projects don’t work out as planned. That doesn’t somehow mean any of us know better. I live 5 blocks away. I won’t be walking there because a) the Ocean Grocery block stands between me and the store and is way too sketch and b) I don’t want to carry stuff 6 blocks. Others may walk there. Who really knows? All we know for certain is our own behavior. You can push as you want. All I know is there hasn’t been a lot of people throwing… Read more »

Kathleen
Kathleen
4 years ago

I hope Jim’s is willing and able to curb the loitering and panhandling so Jim’s doesn’t become a larger version of the Ocean Grocery.

Shauna Nefertari
Shauna Nefertari
4 years ago

Shauna Nefertari liked this on Facebook.

Paul S
Paul S
4 years ago

>> ” Others may walk there. Who really knows? All we know for certain is our own behavior.” @BAF It is more than a behavior or preference issue. Many of the articles I’ve read and advocacy I’ve come across for a grocery store in this location is that many of the lower income residents in this area of the east end DON’T have cars. Especially in all the nearby RRHA properties… So while you may prefer to drive your car to the future Jim’s grocery great for you. Many others will walk out of necessity, not out of preference. Richmond… Read more »

BAF
BAF
4 years ago

@12. I am sure that is true. But that doesn’t mean there isn’t a customer base for drivers. Just because the city pushed for the store because many nearby have transportation challenges doesn’t mean the store cannot see a market for driving patrons. They are not mutually exclusive.

BAF
BAF
4 years ago

@11 If Jim’s isn’t willing to do that, they will limit the customer base in a way that will undermine their profits.

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