Food deserts -- that's what areas without grocery stores are called. And Commerce City is ready to provide some irrigation for the desert area around Reunion, a planned community whose plan has so far lacked a supermarket.
The result? About 16,000 people in the northern range of Commerce City are without a supermarket and wind up driving fifteen minutes -- to Thornton, to Green Valley Ranch, to the SuperTarget in Brighton -- to get to one. "This was the number-one priority coming into my job," says Brittany Morris, who became Commerce City's economic development director two years ago last week.
And now it looks like Morris will be able to check one thing off her list: Yesterday the Commerce City City Council approved an incentive package designed to attract a King Soopers Marketplace to the northwest corner of 104th Avenue and Chambers Road. The almost $2 million package would provide incentives not just for the grocery, but for the developer, Shea Properties. "We're very excited about it," she says.
Because the store would be a King Soopers Marketplace, a larger store concept, the council also approved a Shea rezoning request that would allow a 123,000-square-foot big box pad. But there were some conditions on the deal. For starters, "a shovel in the ground by fall 2011," says Morris, which means that the store could open by the third quarter of 2012.
Gentlemen, start your carts.
Keep Westword Free... Since we started Westword, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Denver, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Denver with no paywalls.