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End of an era

Posted Tuesday, September 11, 2012, at 1:56 PM

A new CVS/pharmacy is under construction at the intersection of North Main Street and Colloredo Boulevard, and when it opens it will be, in one sense, the end of an era -- because it will mean the closure of the CVS location in Big Springs Shopping Center.

If you think about it, the drugstore -- although it moved once and changed name and ownership several times -- is the last of, if not the original tenants, at least the tenants that I remember when my family moved here in 1972.

In the north building, the one whose storefronts run parallel to Lane Parkway, there was a Cooper & Martin grocery store and a Big K. I worked one Christmas at the Big K, just after it had been sold to Wal-Mart and was operating as "Walmart Big K," while getting ready to expand and adopt the full Wal-Mart product line.

In the east building, the one whose storefronts are perpendicular to Lane Parkway, there were, among others, Sullivan's, Kroger and SupeRx Drugs. The Kroger was in the space now occupied by CVS; the SupeRx was originally just next door. When Kroger moved out to Madison Street, SupeRx (which, at the time, was owned by Kroger) moved into the old Kroger space. SupeRx was later sold to Revco, which was eventually sold to CVS/pharmacy.

The shopping center has seen other tenants come and go; now, of course, its anchors (along with the CVS) are a Goodwill store and a United Grocery Outlet, as well as a Dollar General Store.

I'm sure the new CVS will be nice, like other stand-alone CVS stores I've visited. But the closure of the CVS at Big Springs will be the end of the last remaining link to the center as it existed when our family first moved here.

Showing comments in chronological order
[Show most recent comments first]

I understand their move but I hope Big Springs can find an appropriate and magnetic anchor as well.

-- Posted by stevemills on Tue, Sep 11, 2012, at 3:22 PM

I think that it's a bad idea to build the CVS there. It is hard enough trying to get out of Walgreens. Traffic/location is one of the reasons why I never shop there anymore.

But I enjoyed going to CVS. It was easy to get to and you didn't have to dart out into traffic to get there.

Looks like I'll be having to stop going there as well.

-- Posted by -Beth- on Tue, Sep 11, 2012, at 11:40 PM

I agree with Beth. The new location is a terrible choice. This is at one of the two busiest intersections in town. There will not be easy access to getting into the parking lot, unless they can come up with a back entrance like Dollar General Market has.

-- Posted by ILoveRoses on Wed, Sep 12, 2012, at 8:07 AM

The thing is -- and I've said this many times -- the fact that it's a busy intersection is exactly what a retail business wants. A retail business or restaurant wants to be at the busiest intersection in town, or at least the busiest one they can afford, because that traffic represents potential customers. They consider that an asset, not a liability. If you told them they had to locate on a less-busy intersection, they might have decided not to build at all.

The city, of course, can consider traffic flow when approving the site plan, and can require changes in the placement of entrances or exits if there's going to be a traffic problem. They required some changes in the way traffic flowed into the Ascend FCU site, for example. But the city has to be careful about being too heavy-handed -- after all, a new retail store is new investment, which will presumably result in new sales tax revenue.

-- Posted by jcarney on Wed, Sep 12, 2012, at 9:15 AM

John, lest we forget Pizza Villa in the Big Springs Center.

-- Posted by mytaxesaremine on Wed, Sep 12, 2012, at 9:31 AM

Oh, yes, Pizza Villa! I had it in the back of my head that there was some kind of a restaurant but couldn't place it.

-- Posted by jcarney on Wed, Sep 12, 2012, at 3:20 PM

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John I. Carney is city editor of the Times-Gazette.
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