It was revealed at last night's SWNA meeting (unfortunately I was unable to attend, but ANC 6D Commissioner David Sobelsohn has kept me updated) that there will be an approximate 10-day gap between the closing of the old Safeway and the opening of the new Safeway at Waterfront Station, which means Southwesters will have to find a different place to do grocery shopping during that time period. (Perhaps Shuttle-Bug service can be altered to allow seniors and others with mobility issues to access another Safeway in the interim?) The reason for the gap in service is the two Safeway stores have a shared wall that needs to be demolished. A tentative date of April 16th is the scheduled opening date of the new Safeway - right after Tax Day. Also, the current Safeway manager John Ignacio will be replaced with a new manager once the new store opens in April. Once I get more details on these developments, I'll share.
Update: Here is a statement from Craig Muckle, Safeway's manager in charge of its Eastern Division's Public Affairs and Government Relations:
The existing store will close about 10 days early because there is a shared wall between both locations that needs to be taken down prior to the new store opening. During that down time, we will be removing our equipment from the old store (I will note that this equipment will not be used in the new store). Once the wall is taken down, we have asked for a new fenced-in construction staging area to be created that will ultimately limit the impact on shoppers once the new store is opened. Although this will be create a bit of a hardship, we believe that this will be a good solution for enhancing access and safety while the construction continues on the rest of the site.We have been fortunate that we have not had to close during the vast majority of construction. The optimum solution is to not close a store in order to construct a new replacement location, but that is not always feasible or practical. We have at least two current situations in and around the metro area where we have had to close an existing store to construct a replacement. We understand a closure of any kind is a hardship and are sensitive to those concerns, but we would not close the store early if we thought it was avoidable.