Friday, February 04, 2011

Standard-Examiner: Stop ‘N Shop Grocery Closing Its Doors After 54 Years

This rots.....but hey, we have a WallyMart instead!

Submitted by: ND

This rots.....but hey, we have a Wallymart instead....and another vacant building on 12th Street....
‘IT’S PRETTY SAD ’

44 comments:

what will it cost us said...

Didn't we predict that Stop 'N Shop would close when Wal-Mart came to town. With the old Fred Meyer building vacant for years seems the business development department isn't happy with just the empty store fronts downtown, now they are going to the subburbs.

Saying they hope someone comes in to occupy that building, what about all the other vacant buildings in the city.

Will Target next door stay there as an anchor or is it next to close.

Ogden needs to take a hard loo

ND said...

Shopko is next door....and I bet they are next.....

fieldhouse is stupid idea said...

I dislike Walmart as much as anyone, but I think it is the WinCo that killed Stop 'N Shop

Curmudgeon said...

Nd:

Hope ShopKo on 12th doesn't close. I'd have to find a new in-Ogden clothier.

ND said...

Me either...they have some killer electronics deals at times....I remember when they opened and were the talk of the town....think you are right about Winco and Wally is just salt in the wound....

Ray said...

I agree on the Winco affect. Bigger question is cumlative affect of empty buildings on 12th St. Stop/Shp, Hollywood Video, Fred Meyer a ghetto of big box debris. During rebuild of 12th St. the city touted 12th as the gateway to Ogden. Not a good 1st impression me thinks. If a field house is going to happen(I hope not) lets put it on 12th not disrupt 24th and Grant in downtown.

blackrulon said...

Its their own fault. They stayed loyal to Ogden. They didn't ask for taxpayer assistance or property tax breaks. They foolishly employed people who live in Ogden and paid decent wages. They kept store profits in the Ogden area. I'll bet they didn't even contribute to Godfreys campaign fund. It is obvious that they did none of the things that Godfrey likes and supports. How much in tax revenues will the city lose with their closing. It is disengenous for McKonkie(sic) to praise their many years of supporting Ogden when it is he and his team of business and economic advisors who made the decisions that lead to their closing. Anybody but Godfey for mayor. Fire Godfrey and the team of incompotents he has hired.

Sharky's End said...

Too many grocery stores in too small of an area. Lets count the grocers in Ogden now?
If you count the stores that are right on the borders?

50 plus years is a good run; must have been a well managed outfit.

Maybe someone associated with S and S wants to be the next mayor?

Curmudgeon said...

Look, guys, I'm sorry Stop N Shop is closing too. But businesses come and go. Most new business fail in a year or two. Some stay longer. Some stay much longer, like Stop N Shop. But it's a competitive market out there, and things change, new businesses come in, shopping preferences change, business models that were successful or a long time cease being so. . Where is Mervyn's now? Or TWA? Or Studebaker? Or Totally Awesome Computers?

I'm sorry Stop N Shop is closing its doors, but that part of town has been losing major marketers for some time now [Fred Meyer's.] I'm not sure we can fairly attribute every business that closes in the 12th and Washington area to the nefarious influence of Hizzonah and his Merrie Bande in the development office.

And as old businesses close, new ones arrive. Winco e.g. And in today's paper, the same paper that carried the story on Stop N Shop, this: CSN coming to Business Depot.

There are legitimate grounds for complaint, I think, when public money goes to subsidize new competitors for existing stores. Any business moving to Ogden and building should expect and should get some site-work done at city expense [if curbs and medians have to be altered, e.g. or road work done to provie safe access to lots, etc.] But major subsidies that involve the city picking up significant moving or construction expenses for new businesses, or granting extensive tax rebates one way or another, are a different matter, for they improve a business's ability to compete against existing businesses that are not publicly subsidized.

But the business cycle is part of the marketplace. Shopper's preferences and habits change over time, and some old businesses will fall by the way side, just as some new ones become profitable. And it'd be as wrong to attribute every closure to Hizzonah as it would be to credit him with every new business that opens.

Angelo said...

I'm wondering how much the extended construction on 12th street hurt. I know I avoided that area like the plague during the time that area was all torn up. Was it 2 years? It lasted so long I don't even remember.

Curmudgeon said...

Angelo:

I imagine it hurt a lot. I know of some small businesses along Riverdale which closed whose owners think the extended construction there is what sent them under. Business dropped significantly during the construction period, which went on for a long time.

But it's kind of a Catch 22. Roads need to be repaved periodically, or rebuilt and sometimes expanded, in order to provide easy fast access to businesses along them [which is good for businesses there in the long run], but restricting traffic during that process can and does lead to some businesses going under while the work goes on.

Dan S. said...

Curm, what bothers me is how the administration bragged about Winco as such a successful project, taking credit for the new business and new jobs (because, if I recall correctly, we spent $1M on environmental cleanup of the site), but never mentioned that because of Winco, other grocery stores will suffer. The demise of Stop N Shop as a result of Winco was completely predictable.

Dan S. said...

Important fact: Stop N Shop is within a redevelopment area (called the 12th Street Redevelopment Area) that was created in 1987 "to assist with the demolition of the old Weber High School property". Tax increment collection on this area was to expire in 2015, but has been extended to 2022 for the benefit of the Salomon Center.

Unfortunately, by the time the tax increment collection expires, the property may not be worth much and so the taxing entities may never end up getting any money from the project. Then it'll probably be back to the drawing board with another RDA extension to subsidize whatever comes next.

This is the problem with the whole RDA tax increment system. Theoretically, when the RDA expires, the taxing entities finally get to benefit from the development. In practice, either the RDA keeps getting extended (like for the mall/Junction) or if it does expire, the property has by then lost its value. (The only exception in Ogden that I know of is the Newgate Mall, where the RDA was allowed to expire in 1992.)

A sensible reform might be to limit RDA tax increment collection to something like ten years, with no exceptions.

Curmudgeon said...

Dan:

Not disagreeing. The one million in public funds spent to clean up the site so Winco would build there is an example of the kind of subsidized-competition I was talking about. If that particular location was so desirable, Winco should have paid for the prep work itself.

That said, the retail food market in Ogden is highly competitive. Even a company with the resources of Albertson's cut and ran. That Winco's subsidized arrival helped put Stop N Shop under I wouldn't doubt. But that Stop N Shop would have continued in business but for that, I couldn't say.

Dan S. said...

Curm: Of course we can't be sure of what would've happened without Winco. Or without the coming Walmart. But I'm pretty sure that without either one, Stop N Shop would still be viable. That part of the city needs at least one grocery store.

CMJ1 said...

It's a development philosophy. Support and strengthen existing local businesses or ignore them and entice the new White Knight. Ogden has chosen the latter and it's unsustainable and fiscally irresponsible. Cities should be allowed to grow organically, and sometimes businesses do fail, but Ogden has its hands in the pot too often and does not allow this natural change to occur. Does Ogden have a Planning Department?

Ogden resident said...

As I argued when this was all developing the city had a net sum gain of zero in tax revenues when Stop & Shop leaves and Winco opens up. To add insult to injury we now have to start from a tax reciept hole because of the additional recover of the 1 million plus we spent to clean up the site.
We have such a short sighted BD department.

Danny said...

... and here is another insipid article from Scott Schwebke. It tells us nothing. For all the good stuff, one has to come here, to WCF, and Dan S.

And I love this Godfrey-centric line from the article.

"They have been greatly involved in the community," [high paid Godfrey bureaucrat] McConkie said, adding he hopes to determine if another business will open in the building that houses the store.

... so he HOPES to DETERMINE if another business will be opening there. Hey, now THAT'S leadership, not to mention, THAT'S news.

Pure inanity.

And of course, Stop and Shop closed because of the ECONOMY. That's right, 'twas the economy, not to mention COSMIC RAYS that were what did it in, not taxpayer subsidized competition from Winco - a nice store, but it is subsidized competition.

It would have been interesting had Schwebke asked about that. But Schwebke, I am confident, takes money on the side from Godfrey's cronies. That's why he never asks those questions. That's why his articles are crap.

shop the local guys said...

Maybe someone could answer this: What does the closure of Stop and Shop do to the RDA in that area? Does an empty building and lack of sales taxes generated affect the RDA?

Just wondering.

Winco might be local, but the money goes out of state also.

Dan S. said...

Shop:

RDA's don't collect sales tax--just property tax. So the main concern to the RDA would be the gradual deterioration in the building's value.

Curmudgeon said...

Danny, Danny, Danny, you're letting your unreasoning antipathy to the SE run away with your judgment.

You didn't like this, for example:"And of course, Stop and Shop closed because of the ECONOMY." That wasn't the reporter's opinion, Danny. That was the opinion of the store's owners. Here's what the story actually said: "The store that has been at 1130 S. Washington Blvd. since 1957, has become a casualty of the economy and poor sales, Jack Shaum, president and CEO of Rayco Corp., which has owned the business, said in a prepared statement."

You want to take issue with the claim that the economy convinced the owners to pack it in, feel free. But you'll be disagreeing not with the reporter, but with Mr. Shaum.

And you're absolutely right to label this McConkie statement as inanity: "McConkie said... he hopes to determine if another business will open in the building that houses the store." But again, the inanity is McConkie's. All the SE did was report it. Permit me to suggest that it is not possible to be Ogden's city beat town hall reporter dealing with Godfrey administration spokesmen, honchos and flacks daily, and not find yourself reporting inanities with some frequency.

So I'm afraid there's an element of "shoot the messenger" in your complaints, Danny.

Finally, I wouldn't go around claiming reporters are taking bribes unless I had good evidence to support the charge. I don't think you do.

blah, blah, blah said...

Curm, Curm, Curm, whose side are you on? Businesses that are around for 50+ years don't just close because the economy turned bad. Businesses that have been around that long have lived through and survived similar economies. Fact of the matter is, there is only so much money to go around, especially in the grocery store business. As you know (I would hope), just because you build new stores doesn't mean people are going to spend more money. Have you ever heard of the Wal-Mart Effect? If not, research it and see how Wal Mart truly affects an area in which it builds.
Same thing goes for the building of recreational facilities. There is only so much to go around and facilities subsidized by cities hurt existing, privately owned facilities. Don't believe me, let's hook up and talk and I'll be more than happy to show you proof of how the publicly subsidized Soloman Center has hurt and almost killed existing facilities.
I find your comment of, "businesses come and go" very insulting, especially when you claim, "That the business cycle is part of the market place." How many businesses have you owned and lost that had to compete with publicly subsidised facilities? Fact of the matter is, 99% of existing businesses can't compete with these new city built businesses. This whole thing is bullshit!!!! I can't wait for you to pick apart the specifics of my argument, instead of addressing the principles of what Ogden City has done to many existing businesses. Let's subsidize one business and move revenues from one business to this new business, thereby putting the existing business out of business. Net affect, nothing gained and an established business that's been part of the community for 50+ years is gone. Great job Ogden City, way to put another business out of business. But according to Curm, we can't prove that. Yet, until Ogden City got into the property development business, Stop and Shop was a viable business.

Dan S. said...

I think it's reasonable to criticize the reporter for not even raising the question of whether this has anything to do with Winco and Walmart.

Curmudgeon said...

Blah:

If you read what I wrote, you'd have noticed that I agree completely that Ogden ought not to be subsidizing new competition here for established businesses. We agree on that.

I know all about the Wall Mart effect and, along with many others here, raised it as something that ought to be considered as Hizzonah and the Council careened down the "Wal Mark come here at any price please please" road they had chosen.

Just as I, and many others here, objected to the City's subsidizing [and massively subsidizing] a private fitness club owned by FOMs at the Junction. Just as I and many others pointed out [as did the SE as I recall] the unethical initial attempt by the administration to shunt city-paid health club memberships for city employees to that subsidized club. [That little insider arrangement created such a stink the Administration had to back off and permit employees to use the free memberships at other clubs if they wished.]

So we don't disagree on the wrongness of the city subsidizing with public money new competition for old business. I don't think you read what I wrote very carefully.

Now, all that said: there are folks at WCF who seem to attribute the closing of every business in Ogden to the Mayor and his policies. That's over the top. There is a business cycle. Markets do change. Business models that once worked do sometimes cease working well. Businesses do come and go. Fred Meyer on 12th departed long before there was a Winco on the scene or a WalMart coming for example. And so to attribute every closing to Hizzonah makes, as I said, as little sense as attributing every new business that opens to his prowess.

Now, as for Stop N Shop in particular and the story Danny found so objectionable: the SE contacted the store's owners to ask why it was closing. And the owner said the main reason was the economy. Seems to me he's in a better position to know than anyone else, and since his company is leaving Ogden, he was free to blast the Administration as the cause of his company's pulling out. He didn't. You and I and Danny and Dan can disagree with him all we like. But the SE reported what he said, as it should have.

Curmudgeon said...

Dan:

You wrote: I think it's reasonable to criticize the reporter for not even raising the question of whether this has anything to do with Winco and Walmart.

So do I. You noted, I hope that I didn't in any way object Danny's making that point, not did I disagree with it.

But attacking the SE [as it seems to me he did] for reporting Stop N Shop's owners for saying the economy convinced them to pull out was unwarranted. And as for McConkie's inane comment, the reporting of which also seemed to irritate Danny --- well, Dan, my view on that is this: When Mr. McConkie says something inane in his capacity as an Administration appointee I absolutely want the SE to report it. As it did in this story.

Jennifer said...

Hey all you speculators:

I spoke with a couple of the employees ... one in person, who had been with S&S since the early 80s ...

as far as reasons for closure:

Winco? maybe
12th Street construction? a big contributor
Time for a change? smaller contributor

And to whom-ever said "there's always Winco" --- for shame! ... there is Wangsgards! Winco does not qualify as local - Wangsgards is a local family owned-business.

TLJ

Dan S. said...

Jennifer or anyone else:

For those of us who weren't here at the time, can you describe what happened around 1987 regarding the old high school, Stop N Shop, and Shopko? I'm confused about what was there before and what's newer.

homey said...

Dan,

Weber High School was where the Shopko is now. Stop and shop was always where it is, however it was closer to the corner of 12th and Wash. and much smaller.

They built a new Weber High in North Ogden, Stop and Shop built a newer and larger store and Shopko was also built at the same time.

Dan S. said...

Thanks, homey. Just one more question: Why was Weber High inside the Ogden School District boundary? Or were the districts different back then?

Curious 1 said...

Curm, Fred Meyer left when Kroger bought Fred Meyer/Smiths and decided to keep the 12th and Harrison Smiths. I would of liked to have kept the larger store like they did in Salt Lake on 4th S and made it a Smiths Marketplace, but that didn't happen.

They didn't vacate the larger building because of poor economy, just location with an established Smiths.

A lot of business has left after many years in Ogden, Cross Western wear, Wolff Sports, businesses in the Mall, Nordstrom, BM. Compare the tax collected by the county and sales tax collected by the city say from 10 years ago and now. I think there were more businesses here in town than now.

I hope the old Golds Gym building on 25th is still keeping the taxes paid and not reduced for non-use.

I also look at how they attracted folks downtown, annual street fair sidewalk sale. Mayor didn't like it and it is now gone. Hof Festival used to be at Union Station, now at the fairgrounds.

At least we still have the fall festival thanks to the folks on 25th street.

Don't get me statrted on the Windsor hotel or Star Noodle, or the old Wheelwright lumber yard.

homey said...

Dan
I dont know why Weber High was there. It was at that location for as long as I can remember. I believe that my Mother graduated from there in the early fifties.

If memory serves me correctly there has always been two school districts also. Weber and Ogden.

Also the Weber County shops and Fire Station was located at the north west corner of 12th and Washington for many years.

Curmudgeon said...

Curious:

I know the sad tale of bungling in re: the Windsor public subsidy matter [by the Council as well as Hizzonah], and the Star Noodle continuing embarrassment after its sale to an FOM. I don't know any story related to the lumberyard. Do tell.

And what was the annual sidewalk sale? I'm not familiar with that either. Not the Mayor-tanked Ogden Summer Fest, was it? Something different?

The draw down of big box stores in the area continues. Mervyns. Macy's down Riverdale way. And Nordstroms, as you note. Lots of things go into making an under-performing store, some local, some not. Some end simply as a result of merger/buyouts [Fred Meyer].

New business always welcome, and established businesses have to compete with them successfully. But as many of us have noted, repeatedly, it is just plain wrong for the city to be using public money to subsidize new commercial businesses coming in to compete with older established unsubsidized ones. Just. Plain. Wrong.

ozboy said...

Dan

On the question - why was Weber High in Ogden school district. That goes way way back to when Ogden was a lot smaller and the area in question was rural and outside the city limit. Back in the day when 25th street was 5th street and the numbered streets north and south started at 20th which was also the Ogden river and city limit.

Weber High served the entire county from Roy & Uinta on the South, North Ogden on the north and from the mountains to the GSalt Lake on the west. It was like that until the early 1960's when they built Bonneville High in Washington Terrace for all those living on the south end of the county.

I lived in South Ogden and had to go clear across town every day to high school at Weber. The school was about half farm kids and half city kids. Being a transplant from Ogden high made me a mortal enemy and I got my butt kicked on a regular basis by those big farm kids from Plain City, Hooper, etc. By the way, I went to school with Godfrey's dad who came to my defense several times when I was about to be stomped by one of his farmer friends! He was kinda of a small kid, but a real bad ass when it came to standing up to the big bulloxes!)

Jennifer said...

Dan S.
I went to school there when it was the Ogden/Weber Adult Vocational High School & Skills Center -- pre-cursor to the Ogden-Weber Applied Technology Center (now College) --- and graduated in 1980 with a GED and certificates for both architectural & mechanical drafting.

I don't quite remember when they tore it down, but I was sad to see it go ... I spent 1/2 of sophomore year, junior and most of senior year there. I actually graduated early because I didn't take summers off ... but they made me wait till the regular class of '80 graduated to get my diploma.

I remember the Taco Time across the street with trees and empty lots to the west across Washington Blvd ... and applying for a job at the A&W down the street.

TLJ

Jennifer said...

Oh, and driving by today, I noticed new signs already: Aarons (rent to own) is probably going in the old Seagull Book location ... and one rumor said Kohl's for the S&S building? The big top half of the signs are still blank ...

TLJ

Moroni McConkie said...

Ozboy: All these years of reading your posts, I had you pegged as a Tiger and would never have guessed you shared my alma mater, Weber High.

School kids never care too much about such things, so for my 3 years there I never questioned why WHS was within Ogden City limits (as was the Weber School District headquarters next door). My guess is that in the decades when it served the entire county, it had to be centrally located, hence 12th & Washington.

Interesting what you say about Lord Mayor's father at WHS. How well I remember Jason W. on this Forum, once speculating that Godfrey, a Weber Warrior, "wouldn't have lasted a minute" at Ogden High.

When I was there, my best friends were Ogden High transplants. I never had much in common with my fellow cowmen.

I remember lots of ribbing from OHS students and especially faculty on occasions when the two populations mingled, about "getting our chores done," etc. It is only as an old man that I understand what shaped the attitudes that made OHS-WHS rivalry so feverish. Ogden School District folks had found work with the railroad, etc., with its dependable wages, moved into town, and came to understand leisure and prosperity. They'd realized that maybe God, after all, didn't require humans to spend their lives suffering & compromising their health from the farmer's inevitable pitfalls. They felt superior to those in the county who still believed salvation came only through farm life.

ozboy said...

Moroni

The real issue at the heart of the Weber vs Ogden High rivalry was all about a little brown jug!

I, being a dyed in the wool Tiger, was much more interested in what might have been in the jug than the jug itself.

It was my bad luck to get thrown out of Ogden High (when they discovered I had moved into Weber's district) and subsequently enrolled at Weber during a period of football dominancy by the Tigers over the Warriors. Of course my big mouth of the time could not resist making a lot of hay, so to speak, over this wonderful situation. This in turn led to a number of lumps, bruises and contusions on several of my body parts delivered by the before mentioned large and muscular farm boys. It was hell at times, but sweet revenge came in the fact that the Brown Jug resided for the most part in the OSH trophy case during those years.

I had Algebra with Godfrey's dad and helped him a lot as he had a hard time comprehending it. He in turn stood up for me when various large and muscular farm kids were looking to pants me and/or inflict various welts and bruises on my tender city slicker ass!

Disgusted said...

Ozboy,

The apple doesn't fall far from the tree. His son seems to have problems with numbers too.

Moroni McConkie said...

Ozboy: Absolutely. In all the decades OHS & WHS played for the Little Brown Jug, it seems that the Tigers had about 4 wins for every Warriors victory.

The great irony is that the last year the Jug was contested (1971), before OHS was demoted, population-wise, to 3-A, Weber won it. So did WHS officially retire the Jug? Does anyone know?

history googler said...

http://www.whs.weber.k12.ut.us/ImprovementPlanpdfs/SchoolImprovementPlan4-6.pdf

ozboy said...

History googler

Thanks for the history link on the old Weber High.

I have the impression that history might be wrong on the Little Brown Jug however. I arrived at the old WHS from OHS in 1957 and it seems like the Brown Jug rivalry had already been around for quite some time by then.

another googler said...

You might be right Oz. I googled the brown jug thing as it pertains to Ogden and Weber and found the following from a 2002 edition of the DNews:

"Ogden and Weber meet for the 65th time in the battle for the Little Brown Jug. Ogden leads the series 42-20-2."

That would put the rivalry back into the 1930's.

ND said...

Popped into S&S today for likely the last time....shelves are starting to get bare....employees seemed depressed and the checker I went through hoped to get work at one of the "new ones"....some net gain here for Ogden eh?....I don't think so....sad state of affairs. This subsidizing to the downfall of established businesses has to stop. The by local chatter by the city is just that...chatter

ND said...

Meant to say "the buy local" chatter from the city is just that...chatter...

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