Eagle grocery store changes taking shape
EAGLE — Eagle City Market shoppers are learning it’s one thing to hear about a 16,000 square foot expansion and quite another thing to actually see what that looks like.
As Gary Burkhart, of Mark Young Construction Co., the general contractor for the Eagle City Market project, notes, people don’t really connect with the expansion numbers until the masons arrive on the scene and start putting up walls.
“Then people say how it’s bigger than it looks,” Burkhart said.
The masons are now at work on the City Market expansion in Eagle, which will eventually enlarge the downvalley supermarket from 41,000 square feet to 57,000 square feet. Additionally, crews are reconfiguring the parking area and both temporary and permanent alterations are happening inside the store.
“I think our customers are really pleased with the parking that has been added on the northwest side of the lot,” said store manger Dave Betts. “The angle parking has made entering and exiting those spaces a lot easier.”
The new parking area is a preview of what’s to come at the supermarket parking lot. When competed, the entire area will feature angled parking and the lot with have a total of five entrance and exit sites.
While customers are noticing the big changes outside of the store, there are also a number of changes inside the supermarket. And, notably, store hours have been altered.
“The store started its revised 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. hours on Labor Day,” said Betts.
The earlier closing was required for the twin purposes of interior remodeling and regular store stocking.
“The closing at 9 is essential for us to get the work done we need to get done at night,” said Betts. “We anticipate returning to the 11 p.m. closing once the remodel is completed.”
New refrigerated display cases on the north side of the store debuted Wednesday, an example of the nighttime remodel work. Customers also noted that a new, temporary pharmacy popped up a couple of weeks ago on the north side of the checkout lanes.
“Kay and her team are a little cramped at the temporary space but the pharmacy is operating with little to no major disruption,” said Betts.
While the pharmacy operates out of the temporary space, the walk-up window located at the front of the store has been closed.
“The walk up window will return and the pharmacy team is looking forward to its new space when it reopens in its final location,” said Betts.
Betts noted that the pharmacy will be the first department to reopen in remodeled space.
In the weeks ahead, as the exterior is completed and attention is focused on interior changes, City Market customers will see departments shift and aisles change.
“Our customers will really start seeing in-store changes as we move into the colder months,” said Betts. “I could not be more proud of the community I get to serve and although there will no doubt be bumps and setbacks, as there are with any project, the people here in Eagle are truly going to get a great store when the project is finished.”
As for a completion date, Betts said he honestly can’t yet answer that question yet. But he stressed that customers have been understanding about the process.
“Keep those great receipt comments coming in, telling us that the construction is a bit inconvenient but you are highly satisfied with our employees,” said Betts “That’s what keeps us motivated. That’s the best part of my day — when I get to share with employees what our customers have said about them.”
As the Eagle City Market remodel progresses, the store is preparing to add employees. There are currently 11 positions open at the store and the remodel will bring on another 20 employees.
“I am pretty excited that we will be adding 20 jobs to the valley,”said Betts.
Those jobs will include workers for the new cheese counter and sushi station at the store. Additional workers will be needed for the expanded produce and natural foods sections. Betts noted that the in-store Starbucks will be substantially larger, with free wifi in a dining area it shares with the deli and an outdoor seating area.
The valley’s commercial and residential property markets are similar in some ways — availability is tight and nothing is what you’d call “cheap.”