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Meijer wants abandoned Kmart site in Orion Township

Meijer has its eyes on an abandoned Kmart in an Orion Township shopping center as a future location for a Meijer store.

The former Big K at 1025 S. Lapeer Road in the Lake Orion Plaza would be demolished and replaced by the nearly 90,000-square-foot Meijer store, which would be slightly bigger than the Big K and not a full-size supercenter, according to site plan documents. The new Meijer would be physically detached from the neighboring Planet Fitness.

A Meijer representative confirmed Thursday that they plan to build the new store, but said it was still too early to give full details, including the anticipated opening date. While the store wouldn’t be a full-size supercenter, it would carry more than just groceries, the company said.

However, the owner of the shopping center said he believes that Meijer is aiming for a late 2022 opening.

“I think it’s good all the way around,” the owner, Edward Boutrous of The Boutrous Companies, said Thursday. “Some folks wished for Trader Joe’s, but they only take 10,000 square feet; I’m not sure what we’d do with the other 75,000 (square feet).”

The Meijer project was approved this week by the township for a special use permit, although the site plan still requires a few small items before final approval can be granted, according the Tammy Girling, the township’s planning and zoning director.

Many former Kmarts across metro Detroit have found new life and uses in past years, including as Hobby Lobby stores, furniture stores, Krogers and U-Haul garages. More recently, Henry Ford Health System announced plans to redevelop an old Kmart site on Ann Arbor Road in Plymouth Township into a 120,000-square-foot outpatient medical center.

There is only one Kmart still open in Michigan. That store, in Marshall, about a 20-minute drive east of Battle Creek, is leased by Kmart from a landlord who lives in California.

The Kmart brand was born in Michigan in 1962, when Detroit-based retailer S.S. Kresge Co. opened the first one in Garden City.


Posted By: Detroit Free Press on April 22, 2021.  For more information, please click here to read the source article.

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