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Niagara Falls
Monday, February 6, 2023
Letter: Hoping Village grocery store offers ‘specialty’ goods NOTL needs
Letter to the editor. File

Dear editor:

I would like to offer some advice to John Hawley about his plans for a grocery store in the final phase of the Village development, (“Village plaza set to expand with grocery store, hotel, more retail,” The Lake Report, Nov. 24).

While I am thrilled that you are planning a grocery store in your development, I am a little worried about two things.

First, the small size of the store at 14,000 square feet means that it could become a small format convenience store.

Grocery stores are typically at least 38,000 square feet and usually much larger but small formats range from 12,000 to 25,000 square feet.

Small-format grocery stores typically carry a limited range of everyday products and that is exactly what we already have in the Old Town.

So, because we can’t get some products, we need we have to drive at least to Virgil for basic needs but usually to St. Catharines or Niagara Falls for anything beyond that.

What we actually need is a “specialty” grocery store that carries the products that the other stores don’t.

If you are able to entice a new, big grocery chain to enter the market it likely will just test the market with a convenience-type store and a limited range of products and we’ll still be driving to St. Catharines.

I think you’ve done a spectacular job on your development so far. You have even made those apartment buildings look not too bad.

My second concern is if you are building a store before you have a tenant. You should never do that.

Most developers have no idea what a retailer needs to make a store work efficiently. You would severely limit your options.

Deliver to us the right type of grocery store and we will be happy!

Jackie Bonic

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