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ShopRite to anchor mixed-use project in Newark's Central Ward

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A rendering of the Springfield Avenue Marketplace, in Newark.
A rendering of the Springfield Avenue Marketplace, in Newark. - ()

A new ShopRite store will anchor a redevelopment project slated for an 11-acre site several blocks west of downtown Newark, its developer announced today.

The firm, Tucker Development Corp., said the 67,000-square-foot supermarket will open on Springfield Avenue and Jones Street as part of the mixed-use project in the city’s Central Ward. The so-called Springfield Avenue Marketplace, which is slated for a fall groundbreaking, will also include another 60,000 square feet of retail space and 150 residential units. 

The ShopRite deal was first reported Monday night by The Wall Street Journal, which said the supermarket chain won the support of Mayor Cory Booker over Walmart. The story said Wakefern Food Corp., the Woodbridge-based retail cooperative and distribution arm for ShopRite, signed a 20-year lease for the site.

In a prepared statement today, Booker said “there is no better place for a large grocery store than Springfield Avenue,” noting the need to give city residents access to fresh food. With the development being located in Newark’s Urban Enterprise Zone, customers will be entitled to a 50 percent reduction of sales tax on most purchases, plus a full exemption from taxes on grocery and clothing purchases in New Jersey, a news release said.

The store will expand Wakefern’s ever-growing presence in New Jersey and the Brick City. The company is building an 180,000-square-foot distribution facility on Cornelia Street that will supply ShopRite and PriceRite stores in the Northeast.

Richard Tucker, president and CEO of the Highland Park, Ill-.based developer, said ShopRite and other retailers at the site “will help recapture a large portion of the $575 million in retail sales Newark loses every year,” as residents have been forced to make 38 percent of their purchases outside the city. The store will be owned by Wakefern member Neil Greenstein, who owns and operates a ShopRite in Bloomfield.

Last fall, Tucker opened the Courtyard by Marriott near the Prudential Center, marking the first new hotel in downtown Newark in four decades.

Springfield Avenue Marketplace is expected to create 240 construction jobs and nearly 400 full-time and part-time jobs, the news release said. The development is one of eight that sought financing under the state’s Urban Transit Hub tax credit program, but were left out of the final round of awards for mixed-use applications. The projects are now awaiting the outcome of efforts to consolidate and overhaul the state’s incentive programs.

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