City to break ground on new grocery store in East KCMO - KCTV5

City to break ground on new grocery store in East KCMO

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The Linwood Shopping Center has seen better days and now most storefronts are empty. (KCTV5) The Linwood Shopping Center has seen better days and now most storefronts are empty. (KCTV5)
KANSAS CITY, MO (KCTV) -

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

It’s been almost 10 years since a store anchored the strip mall but on Monday the city broke ground on a new Sun Fresh Market.

City leaders are hoping the new grocery store will 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 the 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.

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.

“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.

 "A full-service grocery store right in the heart of the urban core is extremely needed, its one of those things that we take for granted, in some neighborhoods across our city there are groceries stores on every block," Reed 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.

"I'm really excited about the redevelopment of the store because it will be a catalyst for redevelopment and to reenergize this community, both sides of Prospect," area resident Shontrice Patillo said.

Construction is expected to take about 12 months, allowing the grocery store to open next spring.

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