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Fourth Food Lion part of grocery growth in Pa.

January 06, 1998

Fourth Food Lion part of grocery growth in Pa.

By LISA GRAYBEAL

Staff Writer, Chambersburg

CHAMBERSBURG, Pa. - Commercial growth is moving west of Chambersburg with the construction of a Food Lion supermarket in a new strip mall on Lincoln Way West in Hamilton Township.

The 37,000-square-foot grocery store, expected to employ between 60 and 65 full- and part-time workers, will be among three or four other smaller stores to occupy the so-called West Side Plaza, according to Michael K. Kessinger, Hamilton Township supervisor chairman.

Timber Development of Atlanta is still negotiating lease agreements with prospective plaza tenants and with a fast-food restaurant chain considering building on a plot in front of the plaza, Kessinger said.

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Supervisors approved the site plan about a month ago, Kessinger said.

The developers plan to place a traffic signal at the entrance to the plaza on U.S. 30, subject to approval by the state Department of Transportation, he said.

Preliminary grading of the property, owned by St. Thomas, Pa., resident Harold Brake and zoned for commercial use, has been done and construction of the plaza is expected to start in the next few weeks, Kessinger said.

"This will clearly represent the largest commercial development on the west side of Chambersburg. It clearly reflects that the community is growing," said L. Michael Ross, president of the Franklin County Area Development Corporation.

Demographic studies done by Food Lion show that the west side of Chambersburg is growing, according to Tawn Earnest, corporate communications coordinator at the company's headquarters in Salisbury, N.C.

"We like to put stores where we anticipate growth," Earnest said.

The new store will be similar to the three other Food Lion supermarkets in Franklin County - two in Chambersburg and one in Shippensburg, Pa. - Earnest said. The company also has a warehouse in Greencastle, Pa.

Food Lion operates on the premise that people don't like to drive across town for their groceries, Ross said.

"One of our strategies is to bring the grocery store closer to the shoppers," Earnest said.

Joining the new Food Lion in the growing supermarket business is the Wal-Mart Super Store, a 69,000-square-foot grocery addition to the Lincoln Way East retail store, which is expected to open in March.

In November, a 53,000-square-foot Weis supermarket opened in the new Wayne Plaza on Wayne Avenue, across from the Kmart shopping plaza and the Giant supermarket.

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