Nothing in store — yet — for former Dominick’s in Frankfort
BY SUSAN DEMAR LAFFERTY firstname.lastname@example.org June 27, 2014 7:34PM
Several smaller stores near the former Dominick's also are vacant in the Hickory Creek Marketplace at 199th Street and LaGrange Road in Frankfort. | Susan DeMar Lafferty/Sun-Times Media
Updated: June 29, 2014 2:10AM
The Dominick’s food store in Frankfort remains empty six months after it closed, but village officials are confident a new owner and new tenants can be found, although it may not happen quickly.
Cerberus Capital Management has agreed to buy Dominick’s parent company, Safeway Inc., and the closing could take place in the fourth quarter of this year, said Jeff Cook, Frankfort’s development services director.
Mariano’s, Jewel and Whole Foods bought up several former Dominick’s stores when the grocery chain collapsed last year. But as of March, nearly half of the 72 Dominick’s stores in the Chicago area still were vacant, and the new ownership could delay the conversion of the Frankfort store, he said.
“We have no doubt it will be acquired, but how quickly?” he said. “We knew this would take awhile, especially because of the corporate process.”
While another grocery store in that space is “improbable,” Cook said, the 75,000-square-foot Dominick’s building could be divided into smaller stores.
Within a one-mile stretch of LaGrange Road, where the empty Dominick’s sits, are five other grocery stores: Brookhaven Marketplace, Aldi, Walt’s, Mariano’s and Jewel.
“We need to find a way to convert it, but the design and build will take some time,” Cook said.
Because the property already is zoned to allow a broad range of commercial uses, the village will have little say in who the new tenants are.
The store is in the Hickory Creek Marketplace, now anchored by Home Depot, at 199th Street and LaGrange Road. The retail plaza, with the exception of the Dominick’s building, is owned by Inland Commercial Real Estate.
“They seem to be confident that it is a good site and will get filled,” Cook said, adding this is a strong market area with a high volume of traffic.
Several stores in the plaza near the former Dominick’s also have been vacated, and Cook is concerned that other remaining businesses will suffer, too.
“I encourage residents to shop in that area. Those businesses depend on drive-by traffic. The spillover is important to their survival,” he said.
The retail center also includes a Staples, Hallmark, GNC, Sears Optical, Back to Bed, Jimmy John’s, Steak and Shake and a Japanese restaurant, according to Inland’s website.