Beechview residents will see a grocery store open next spring to replace Foodland, which left the neighborhood lacking a supermarket when it closed late June.
State Senator Wayne Fontana says the new IGA will need “gap financing” first, in order to gut the former Foodland building and purchase new equipment.
The Senator says he will help secure the funding needed for the project, which will be routed from a state capital improvement fund to the Urban Redevelopment Authority before being channeled into the project. Fontana says that will likely be several hundred thousand dollars.
Fontana says the lack of a grocery store was more than just an inconvenience for the residents of Beechview.
“I grew up in Beechview in the 1950s. There’s been a grocery store there that whole time, and that grocery store obviously anchored the community. Not having one there certainly doesn’t help any future economic development. We feel that with a new grocery there, it will bring Beechview back to what it once was.”
Fontana says while IGA is based in Illinois, the operator of this store will be an experienced local grocer.