Heinen's Opens Doors To Its Downtown Cleveland Store

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Hundreds packed the opulently decorated new store at 9th and Euclid. Mayor Frank Jackson wants the grocery to further the city’s plans to become a thriving residential area. Right now the downtown population is at about 13,000 people.

“Our goal is to have 25,000 people living downtown,” says Jackson. “In order for that to be a real neighborhood, you need amenities that people demand in neighborhoods, and a grocery store – and a quality grocery store – is one of those essential amenities.”

Nearby there are still shuttered storefronts and other signs of economic blight. But Daniel Last, a Westlake resident who works downtown, thinks this Heinens will be an effective economic driver.

“I really think there’s going to be a domino effect, where this is going to serve as an anchor to the community,” says Last. “Driving more people who want to live downtown, driving more people who want to work downtown.”

A series of boutique hotels and the new county headquarters are also expected to help boost downtown commerce.

This is Heinen’s eighteenth store in Ohio, and its first urban location.

It’s nestled next to the new 9 Hotel and fairly new Cuyahoga County Headquarters, which staff hundreds of workers.

Joe Marinucci, resident of the Downtown Cleveland Alliance, a community development organization, says while some parts of Euclid Avenue are still recovering economically, the new Heinens should help restore commerce and activity.

”We have 125,000 people that commute into downtown Cleveland every day for work. So we think it’s actually a great customer base for Heinen’s, we think they’ll do very, very well here.”

Heinens is admittedly taking a gamble with this new store model. Unlike their other stores, there’s no free parking and the layout is not as spacious.

But backers say between the commuter lunch traffic and downtown residential need for groceries, the store should make out well.

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