BALTIMORE (WJZ)—A long-awaited supermarket is finally coming to West Baltimore.
As Christie Ileto explains, a 67,000 square foot grocery store ends what residents have long called the “food desert” in Howard Park.READ MORE: City Council To Consider Resolution Calling For Public Fund Supporting Local Reproductive Health Organizations
Ask any Howard Park resident where the nearest grocery store is and they’ll tell you:
“We have to go across tracks to Food King or Security Boulevard,” said Anthony.
“Oh, wow. You’re looking at a good mile either way,” said Donald Sterling.
After 14 years without a grocery store, area residents relying on public transit will soon look no further than their front doors.
Tuesday, city leaders broke ground on a new ShopRite supermarket on Liberty Heights Avenue.
Construction on the once vacant, gated lot will end what residents have long called a “food desert” in West Baltimore.READ MORE: Cancellations & Delays: Maryland Schools, Businesses & Government Offices
“If you want to get a loaf of bread or a gallon of milk all you have to do is walk across the street,” Anthony said.
“It’s an ideal location. It’s close to residential communities and housing. It’s on a main road and has great accessibility to public transportation,” said Andy Klein, CEO of Klein’s ShopRite.
Once completed, the store will stand solid at 68,000 square feet. ShopRite says it will be its largest store in the city.
The $20 million project will house fresh produce, a pharmacy and put more than 200 Baltimoreans back to work.
“I want to get in because if there’s going to be work over here it will be convenient for me too,” Anthony said.
“It will make all the difference in our community, especially for the jobs, for the economic development, improvement commercial and vacant, and become more appealing for those looking to move into [Howard Park], said Preston Greene, president of Howard Park Civic Association, “ultimately bringing Howard Park back to life and back in business.”
Construction will be completed by April 2014MORE NEWS: Orioles & Diamondbacks Picking Themselves Up After 2021 Failures
There are eight other Klein ShopRite supermarkets in Maryland.