Poolesville Shopping for Grocery Store
For years, the town has been pushing for a full-service grocer to come to town but have had resistance from large chain grocers who say the community is too small.
Now, the town is taking matters into its own hands to show small independent grocers that this town is prime real estate.
On Monday, the Poolesville Town Commissioners voted 4-1 in favor of spending $7,500 to update a Commercial Development Study that provides market research for a grocery store in town.
“This is a biggest thing the citizens have spoken about that they want a grocery store here,” said Town Manager Wade Yost.
Town Commissioner Jerome Klobukowski cast the dissenting voted against spending money on the study saying it’s not the town’s job to market commercial properties.
“We should help them cut through county and state red tape, but beyond that it’s not the town’s job to do the market research. Property owners should market their space,” Klobukowski told MyMCMedia Tuesday.
The contract was awarded to Thomas Point Associates of Annapolis to update a 2012 market study of the town.
Thomas Flynn, owner of Thomas Point Associates, conducted the original market study in 2007 and did the update in 2012. He said the study will provide potential grocery store owners the information needed to determine if Poolesville is a good fit. That includes income, demographics, community engagement and business climate.
“I think it will be a small or independently-owned grocery or it could be a small chain grocery store,” Flynn told MyMCMedia. “It is not going to be one of the larger ones. They require high population numbers. It would have to be tailored to the smaller market with high income population with high-end taste in shopping.”
Poolesville has been trying to entice a grocery store to the community since Selby’s Market left in 2012. That space at 19610 Fisher Street is now being occupied by Tractor Supply Co. The closest grocery store to the town in the Harris Teeter in Darnestown.
Town Manager Wade Yost said he believes that filling the Selby’ s Market space is a good thing for a future grocer.
“A smaller grocery wouldn’t look at us because of the threat that a bigger grocery store could come into where Tractor Supply came in. Now that space is filled and there is no threat,” Yost said.
“We are putting together an aggressive campaign to go after them,” Yost said.
Flynn said he expects to have his study done by the end of September.