Large banners hanging above the three entrances to the King Soopers store at Belleview Avenue and Federal Boulevard announce the store will close May 5.
The closing makes way for demolition of the existing store and construction of a new 78,000-square-foot facility that will include a pharmacy drive-thru and a service station at a cost of about $17 million.
Customer Connie Sullivan said she regularly shops at the store because it is within walking distance of her home, but she agreed the makeover was long overdue.
“The store is small and a lot of the time, I can’t find items on my shopping list,” the Englewood resident said as she came out of the store. “I hate to see it close only because it is so handy, but the plans sound great so we’ll have a nice store here and it should be a boost to the area.”
Evidence of the planned project is visible as many of the store sites surrounding the supermarket are empty. Others, such as a liquor store and Subway, are still doing business.
An employee in the liquor store said the business will move to a nearby vacancy but didn’t know just when that would happen. A few doors away, a Subway employee said the store will stay open until about the end of May and then move to a location to the east near the Dairy Queen.
Once the King Soopers store closes, work will begin inside to remove all the fixtures and equipment. However, demolition must wait until the adjacent tenants are relocated. That is expected in late May, which would clear the way for demolition of the building to start in early summer.
The current 42,000-square-foot store was built about 1960 and, although it was remodeled in 1988, it doesn’t meet the expectations of today’s shoppers.
The proposal will redevelop 70 percent of the shopping center by demolishing the existing store as well as the majority of the surrounding retail space. Demolition and construction are expected to take about 10 and a half months, so the goal is to open the new King Soopers in the first quarter of 2013.
Earlier this year, King Soopers representatives presented a request to Englewood for city financial participation of $510,500 to cover the cost of public improvements being made during the project.
The City Council-approved plan will rebate 50 percent of the use tax on furniture, fixtures and equipment and then annually rebate 50 percent of the sales tax revenues collected by the store until the target is reached or for the first four years the store is open, whichever comes first.