New grocery store expected to improve quality of life in east KC - KCTV5

New grocery store expected to improve quality of life in east KCMO

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City leaders are hoping to convert the building into a new grocery store. (KCTV5) City leaders are hoping to convert the building into a new grocery store. (KCTV5)
KANSAS CITY, MO (KCTV) -

The Linwood Shopping Center has seen better days and now most storefronts are empty.

But city leaders are hoping to convert the old strip mall into a new grocery store, and that would drastically improve the quality of life for people living in the area.

"The market will bring more revenue, more people. It would be a great help for this community,” Lewis Gray said.

Gray lives just three blocks away from this intersection of Linwood Boulevard and Prospect Avenue, the location of the shopping center, and he remembers when it was thriving.

"It's going to really come to life,” Gray said with a smile.

If everything goes to plan, a new Sun Fresh Market will go into the shopping center.  

Both Gray and city officials hope it will bring in more people and more businesses to the area.

"Every community deserves a full-service grocery store,” City Councilman Jermaine Reed said.

Reed says this project has been in the works for years. Wednesday morning, it passed through the city’s Finance and Governance Committee.

“It has been an eyesore in the community and so we are today, I think almost 10 years later, rectifying an old problem that has really plagued our community for a really long time,” Reed said.

A new grocery store fixes a huge problem in the area as many places in east Kansas City are still considered food deserts. There aren't enough grocery stores in the area so many people resort to unhealthy eating and fast food.

"Building grocery stores by the city is not something that we do every day,” Kansas City Manager Troy Schulte said.  

The 38,000-square-foot store would be leased to the developers for 20 years at just one dollar a year. A sign that the city, and the community, wants this project to move forward.

"I'm glad it’s coming, I really am,” Gray said.

The City Council of Kansas City will vote on Thursday to approve the lease agreement with the grocery store. If it passes, a ground breaking ceremony is in the works for March. 

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