Lucky’s Market moving into old Pic ‘N Save

Published: Wednesday, July 16, 2014 at 1:47 p.m.
Last Modified: Wednesday, July 16, 2014 at 1:47 p.m.

An organic grocery store plans to move into the long-vacant anchor spot in Verde Plaza at the southwest corner of NW 13th Street and 23rd Avenue.

Lucky's Market, based in Boulder, Colorado, has leased the property and hopes to move in by the end of the year, according to real estate broker Betsy Whitaker of Asset Management.

First, the property owner is planning about $1.1 million in renovations, including demolition, facade upgrades and interior remodeling, according to permit applications.

A spokeswoman for Lucky's said the store is not ready to comment yet. According to the Lucky's website, the store offers "local, organic, sustainable and traditionally crafted foods."

Chefs Trish and Bo Sharon opened the first Lucky's Market in Boulder in 2003 and have expanded to eight stores in five states with five more opening soon.

Lucky's comes to Gainesville as Earth Fare, an organic grocery store based in Fletcher, North Carolina, plans to build a new store to open next year in University Towne Center near SW 34th Street and Archer Road, joining other popular grocery stores such as Trader Joe's and The Fresh Market. Gainesville also has the locally owned Ward's Supermarket and Citizens Co-op grocery stores that offer local and organic food, as well as several farmers markets.

The Verde Plaza anchor spot has been empty since Pic ‘N Save closed in 1996, making it perhaps the most visible symbol of the changing fortunes of the old Gainesville Mall area. Whitaker has described several close calls with potential interested tenants over the years, including a Burlington Coat Factory.

Verde Plaza includes the Eastern Market Asian grocery, Dollar Tree, Subway, O2B Kids, Great Clips, H&R Block, a Taco Bell outparcel and Planet Fitness in a separate building that used to be a movie theater.

— Anthony Clark

Lighting Gallery

A store specializing in chandeliers, lamps, bulbs and other lighting supplies has moved to a new location and rebranded itself.

The Lighting Gallery has moved from NW 6th Street to 1313 S. Main St. and has changed its name to 8LP Design.

The owner of the old property put the building up for sale in October, so the business had to find a new location, said owner Laura Tanner. It has been on Main Street since May 29, she said.

"It was kind of short notice," Tanner said. "We had like five weeks to find a new place."

8LP stands for 8-Legged Princess, to reflect Tanner's fascination with octopuses. The company rebranded itself because it wanted to become more of a specialty business, selling lighting packages and offering consultation rather than individual fixtures, she said.

Tanning company: An Orlando-based tanning salon is moving to Gainesville.

South Beach Tanning Company will open a location in Butler Plaza on Archer Road in September.

The location will feature 19 tanning units and two spray-tanning units.

Mattress store: Mattress Town, at 1614 NW 13th St., is going out of business.

The store no longer can compete with big-box retailers, owner Chuck Rogan said.

Sales have been slow for the past two years, said Rogan, who started the business in 2002.

Commercial real estate: The Robinswood commercial property on Archer Road has canceled its plans to expand.

The expansions would have been too costly, said Rob Johnson, partial owner. Robinswood houses businesses such as Chipotle, Bento Box and Hiro Asian Sandwich Bistro.

Front Street Commercial Real Estate Group had been looking for tenants to occupy what would have been the new spaces.

— Carl McKinney

Anthony Clark is the Gainesville Sun business editor and Carl McKinney is a Gainesville Sun correspondent.

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