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April 11, 2012
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Eagle's City Market eying expansion plans

A store that churns about 40 percent of Eagle's sales tax revenue wants to double in size and needs to move to do it, said Eagle Town Board members.

The Kroger corporation, City Market's parent company, wants a store almost twice the size of its Eagle City Market building, and there's not enough room on its current site.

City Market is not leaving Eagle, but is considering expansion to Gypsum, said new Eagle Mayor Yuri Kostick.

It came up during a spirited public input session at Tuesday's town board meeting, just minutes after three new town board members and Kostick were sworn in.

Kostick talked to Joel Starbuck, director of real estate development for Kroger in Colorado.

Starbuck and Kroger like the Eagle store, said it's a high performer and they like being in Eagle, Kostick said.

They'll talk again about some other sites in Eagle, including Eagle River Station, Kostick said.

"I thought it was a positive meeting," said Kostick

Starbuck was out of town and unavailable for comment at press time.

During research and market analysis for Eagle River Station, City Market mentioned that their format is for a larger store, said town board member Scott Turnipseed.

The Eagle City Market building is 38,000 square feet. They want 60,000 square feet and can't do it on that site, Kostick explained moments after he sat down in the mayor's chair.

"They'll stay in Eagle if they can find a site," Kostick said.

Gypsum officials have heard the same rumblings, but haven't talked to anyone from City Market or Kroger.

"We've had zero contact with City Market," said Gypsum Town Manager Jeff Shroll.

Eagle River Station's developers have not talked to Kroger or City Market either, but will be happy to, especially if it means keeping City Market and its sales tax revenue in Eagle, said Trinity RED's Vince Riggio.

"We have not talked to them yet, but we would be more than willing to sit down with City Market to see if there's anything we can do to keep them in Eagle. We'd give them the best deal we possibly can," Riggio said.

"We cannot control their decision, but we can put an opportunity before them that meets or beats anyone's," Riggio said.

Trinity RED is already working with the Kroger company on another development in Atlanta, Riggio said.

For the second time in two years, Eagle voters will decide the fate of Eagle River Station, a commercial/residential development on the town's east side. That vote is scheduled for next month.

"Eagle River Station could accommodate City Market, and they'd probably be very happy there," said Eagle town board member Scot Webster.

City Market, Kroger and King Soopers stores on the Front Range are 50,000 to 60,000 square feet. Some go as big as 125,000 square feet, Riggio said.

Gypsum's 74-acre Tower Center site went to a sealed-bid auction Wednesday. The winning Tower Center bid will be announced next month.

Trinity RED is not among the bidders, and they have no intention of moving their project to Gypsum, Riggio said.

"We are committed 100 percent to Eagle River Station and we're committed to Eagle," Riggio said. "We will do everything we can to keep City Market in Eagle."

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The VailDaily Updated Apr 11, 2012 05:57PM Published Apr 11, 2012 01:38PM Copyright 2012 The VailDaily. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.