Nearly one year ago, as lawyers faced off in the first battle over Detroit’s bankruptcy bid, Meijer opened its first store at the Gateway Marketplace shopping center on 8 Mile Road and Woodward Ave. The retailer is not giving up on the economically depressed city, either, as it prepares to open a second location.
The retailer today had a formal groundbreaking ceremony for its second supercenter, which will be located at the site of the former Redford High School on the city's west side.
"The opening of our store in the city of Detroit last summer marked a significant milestone in our company history, and the beginning of a promise to be a part of this community long into the future," co-chairman Hank Meijer said. "We could not be more pleased with its success, and look forward to opening another supercenter here in Detroit."
Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan was among several government and Meijer representatives in attendance at the groundbreaking ceremony.
"The first Meijer store in Detroit has shown how tremendous the market is in the city for quality shopping," Duggan said. "Adding this second store is a real testament to Meijer's commitment to Detroit and Detroiters' love for what Meijer adds to our community. Having these two retail anchors in our neighborhoods fills a great need for our residents and is a major selling point for others who are considering moving into the city."
Located at Grand River Ave. and McNichols Road, the planned Detroit store is expected to create up to 500 jobs. Meijer donates more than 6% of its net profit each year to charitable organizations, including food banks and pantries. The company also partners with local farmers and businesses, when available, to provide locally grown produce and other local products.
In addition to the retailer's traditional grocery and merchandise offerings, garden center and gas station, the planned store will feature the Meijer pharmacy and its free prescription program, as well as clinical services and immunizations designed to promote family health. The free prescription program includes leading oral generic antibiotics with a special focus on prescriptions most often filled for children, prenatal vitamins and medications for those with diabetes and high cholesterol. Since its inception in 2006, the Meijer free prescription program has filled more than 20 million free prescriptions, saving Meijer customers more than $284 million.
Construction of a new Meijer supercenter typically takes a year, and hiring announcements for the second Detroit store will begin in early 2015.