Schnuck’s announced back in April plans to close it’s doors at two Rockford locations, Mulford Road and the location on Rockton Avenue. Reasons behind the decision to close were low sales and high operating costs for the older buildings, and Sunday was the last day for shoppers to walk through the closing stores and shop.
One of those shoppers was Felicia Eleazar. “It’s really sad that we’re losing our neighborhood grocery or supermarket,” said Eleazar. “I learned from the Rockford Neighborhood Association that today’s the last day”.
The Parking lots stood mostly vacant and the corrals for shopping carts remained empty at the closing locations. Still, there were a number of loyal Schnuck’s shoppers walked into their neighborhood grocery store for the last time. “It’s a disappointment because, it’s close to where we live, pretty convenient” said Jerry Brickey, another frequent shopper at the Rocton Avenue location.
The convenience is something many shopper will miss. Now, shoppers will need to prepare for a longer travel time to stock up the kitchen.
“Lucky for me I have a car, a reliable car so I can go to the East side of town,” said Eleazar.
“The way it looks, we’ll be shopping at another Schnuck’s,” said Brickey. “We like their store. We just have to drive farther.” For some, it won’t be as easy as getting in a car and driving an extra few miles. There are obstacles that stand in the way. “Not everybody has a means of transportation<” said Eleazar. “Yes, we have busses but for you to go from the transfer the bus, for you to go to the Charles Street or [on] Harlem. I feel bad, especially [during] winter time,” said Eleazar.
Concerns go beyond transportation to a new grocery store. Residents wonder what’s going to fill the soon to be vacant building in their neighborhood.
“[I] worry a little bit about how long before someone else come’s in, and what the effect will be on the local neighborhood,” said Brickey. “Any kind of business that can go in there and could thrive would be a good thing.”
Schnuck’s employees are being offered equal level positions at other Shnuck’s Rockford locations.
While pharmacy prescriptions from the Mulford store will transfer to the Schnucks on East State Street, and those at Rockton will transfer to Walgreen’s on North Main Street.