Natural Grocers to open new store in Portland

Natural Grocers to open new store in Portland

Colorado-based grocery chain Natural Grocers has plans to open a new store at a long vacant property in northeast part of Portland City that was once slated for a Trader Joe store.

Natural Grocers' Co-President Kemper Isely said the new store would fill the emptiness of the 1.79-acre site on Northeast Alberta Street as well as Northeast Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard. Isely added that Portland was under- served, and the new store would complement other grocery stores in the area.

The Colorado-based popular grocery chain specializes in natural healthy foods and organic produce, and claims to provide healthy products everyday at very affordable prices.

The site was previously slated for a Trader Joe's store. But in February, Trader Joe abruptly announced its decision to withdraw the plan of opening a store on the property. The company blamed negative reactions from the community for the withdrawal of its plans for a new store.

Portland Mayor Charlie Hales acknowledged the challenges faced by Trader. In March, Hales convened a meeting of local leaders, and announced a decision to spend an additional $20 million on affordable housing projects in the area over the period of next five years.

In wake of Natural Grocers' announcement, Mayor Hales said, "We're now able to present a development that will benefit the residents of Northeast Portland, support neighboring businesses, introduce Portlanders to a high- quality, affordable grocer and revitalize a parcel of land that has sat dormant for 15 years."

Natural Grocers is currently operating a total of 85 stores in thirteen states of the U. S. In Portland, it has four stores in the metro area, and has plans to open 8 more stores in the next few years.

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