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Here are the Renderings of the New Walgreens-Key Food, in Video!

Only eight months ago, Shepherd's Hall at Holy Name Church was full of some of the angriest people in the borough. On Thursday, it housed what must have been some of the happiest.

After months of negotiations, Walgreens announced Thursday its plans to lease one third of the store's roughly 14,149 square-feet to a supermarket—another Key Food—forging a partnership unprecedented in the drug store chain's history.

Thursday's packed community meeting was a celebration: Residents helped themselves to an impressive spread of meat, cheese, fruit and several types of sushi, an effort by Key Food to show residents that their demand for fresh food would, in the end, be met.

"This community came together, we fought, we generated petitions, issued press releases, held rallies," said Community Board 7's Ryan Lynch. "I’ve never seen anything like it. Without this community uproar, none of this would have ever happened."

Councilman Brad Lander lauded not just the community's efforts, but praised Walgreens for its willingness to compromise—not to mention foot the bill for the store's exterior construction.

"I find this significant at a very high level on both sides—on the side of the community’s serious organizing and working together…and for Walgreens to see that level of activism and decide to listen," he said.

Roughly two-thirds of the 14,149 square-foot lot will be dedicated to Walgreens, with the remaining third—around 6,000 square-feet—left to Key Food.

Key Food owner Joseph Zahriyeh, who helms several stores in Queens, said the limited space will not be a hindrance to operating a full-service supermarket.

"We are going to carry what a 30,000 square-foot store carries," he said, adding that the market will be fully stocked with fresh produce, a butcher, a deli, dairy products, and even a sushi bar.

The store will likely open in July or August. Construction will begin in March, reps said.

Walgreens intends to hire around 15 employees, while Key Food will hire between 35 and 40. Reps said that the 50 workers employed by the former Key Food will be prioritized when it comes time to hire store staff.

Leonora Stein, whose petition to boycott Walgreens garnered nearly 5,000 signatures, said she's happy with the outcome.

"I’m not necessarily going to congratulate Walgreens, although I do realize that it’s unique for a corporation to go outside the bounds of what they normally do," she said.

Stein added that though she will continue to patronize the neighborhood's independent pharmacies, her distaste for Walgreens has tempered.

"I don’t see that there’s a need for an actual boycott anymore," she said. 

Jared Spergel February 22, 2013 at 06:28 AM
This is great news!!!
mincemeat February 22, 2013 at 02:31 PM
I'm so happy that we've been heard! Even though I wish the grocery section were larger, this is far better than nothing. But I'm still going to get my prescriptions at Ballard's!
Mary Wood February 22, 2013 at 03:43 PM
It is great that there will be a new Key Food, no doubt. I don't understand the vitriol against Walgreens as they were only trying to establish a new store. Their intent was not to kill Windsor Terrace. It is good business to accomodate the wishes of the community and get another Key Food in. They should be congratulated for that. Would it have been better if the property was sold to a developer and a montrosity was built in the space? You cannot control what happens to private property, just as you cannot control to whom an owner sells or rents his property to and have fits because you don't like the "type" of the new resident. Walgreens did a good thing for sure.
Sticky February 22, 2013 at 04:07 PM
The uproar was done without tact or taste. Barbarians are you!
marilyn February 22, 2013 at 05:01 PM
Though this is probably the best that could have happened, I am very worried about the mom and pop stores on the avenue, especially Ballard's. Walgreens has already contributed to the decision of the wonderful card store (Church View Hallmark) on the avenue to close. Ballard's Pharmacy has been a literal life saver to my family, overnighting a med when I was out of town. They have done many kind acts that would just generate blank stares from Walgreen staff. I hope the community continues to support our local shops, even if it means walking an extra block or 2. Marilyn
Lauren Thompson February 22, 2013 at 05:26 PM
Do you have evidence that Church View Hallmark's decision to close was connected to the impending arrival of Walgreen's? -- Lauren
Beth arias February 22, 2013 at 05:59 PM
I am extremely gratified that the Walgreen's Corporation has negotiated a fair resolution in the end in allowing this community to retain a supermarket. To this extent, I wish them well and thank all parties involved for this outcome.
Leonora February 22, 2013 at 06:43 PM
Lauren, Diane said something of that effect to me, yes. It was just the right moment for them with Walgreens coming in and Sammy from Shop Smart wanting to expand into their space. I personally will go to Ballard's and Oak Park and will never spend money at Walgreens. However, it is up to each of us to support who we want to succeed. Walgreens has compromised with community and this is a great outcome.
Ruth Moore February 22, 2013 at 08:56 PM
I beg to differ from the comment that "You cannot control what happens to private property .....etc". I think the community succeeded in doing just that in a peaceful but conistent way for the good of the locality. Well done.
J.T Galla February 23, 2013 at 12:30 AM
seems like a win, win ,win for all parties especially our neighborhood.i think it's great that key food will be prominently located on the corner with an atrium.wallgreens publicity & public relations departments must have been reeling in high gear & damage control mode. big corporations walk funny. lets see what they do.-- we should all thank all the areas unsung heroes especially THE CITIZENS FOR THE PRESERVATION OF WINDSOR TERRACE. they are the ones who made this happen on the streets with their resources & 25 years of experience in community activism. we have a right to free speech but not a right to have a conveniently located grocery store. we do have a right to shop where you wish & vote with your feet & pocketbook.it was a great meeting with a positive outcome . enjoy the moment.
Steven Bornfeld February 23, 2013 at 04:40 AM
Not to be a spoilsport or anything, but how can a 6,000 square foot space carry what a 30,000 square foot space does? I hope Walgreens (and Zahriyeh) are as good as their word. Bruce Ratner made a lot of promises at Atlantic Yards too (so far unfulfilled). I think the neighborhood will keep Walgreens's feet to the fire
J.T Galla February 23, 2013 at 07:57 AM
steven ,you 're right on the money with that. the old key food was a dinosaur. the new key food will be a modern ,state of the art,efficient use of space.for sure ,there will be some growing pains in meeting product line to meet the food needs of shoppers .we should definitely keep tabs on wallgreens. ratner ,the rat, bailed out & sold his interest,after damage was done.
Carol Cox February 23, 2013 at 03:59 PM
There is nowhere to shop for those of us in the lower terrace. I gladly make the hike up to "Ninth Avenue"; but, that hill can be a challenge on some days. I will still have to make the climb from Greenwood; but, there will be more satisfaction with such a wide array of shopping. As for Oak Park, I will remain a loyalist. I think it is imperative that we support our small shop owners. As for Hallmark, my understanding was that the owner was retiring. I don't like to see any small business go. The solution seems simple. We, as a community, must continue to support them, even as we access our newer, larger markets. It's called community!
pamela March 01, 2013 at 04:28 PM
Hallmark is not closing because of Walgreens, the proof in that is that WALGREENS IS NOT EVEN OPEN YET. Also, try getting a prescription filled or purchasing emergency OTC meds/products at Ballard and Oak Park on a Sunday or late at night.
Steven Bornfeld March 01, 2013 at 05:41 PM
My experience with Saj and Ballard, compared to my experience when convenience and need find me at Rite Aid or Walgreens is like night and day. There is absolutely no question in my mind that Ballard is a tremendous asset to the neighborhood. While once in a blue moon I'll hold my nose and go to Rite Aid, it's a rare thing, and short of an urgent matter (last time for me over 5 years ago picking up discharge meds for a relative there because the hospital pharmacy was even worse), I never fill my prescriptions anywhere but Ballard. Frankly, I find their prices on OTC products to be about the same as the chains.
Jonathan March 02, 2013 at 12:27 PM
i was really skeptical that community involvement would change anything for a big corporation like Walgreen's, but all of you surprised me in the best way. Congratulations, and thanks!

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