Group hopes to re-open Clifton grocery store

Group sets eyes on old Keller's IGA

CLIFTON HEIGHTS, OH (FOX19) - The often delayed plans of bringing a grocery store back to Clifton are being resurrected.

A local group is forming a co-op to re-open the old Keller's IGA.

The store is currently owned by Steve Goessling but he's had so many problems renovating the place he's out of money.

Now a neighborhood group called the Clifton Cooperative Market steering committee has a plan to buy the property and get the store back on its feet.

"The object of this is to create a full service grocery store and it would be under a cooperative format which means it would be owned by the community," steering committee member Adam Hyland said.

Hyland says the idea is to give local residents an opportunity to have a stake in the project.

"There's no fee to shop there but you can buy an owner share starting at $200," he said.

The sale of those shares will provide the capital needed to buy the property, finish renovations and get the store off the ground.

Steering committee member Robert Krikorian says he's confident they can make it happen.

"We've had contact with other cooperatives in the region and we've had a lot of help from Blooming Foods which is in Bloomington, Ind. and they've been very supportive. And actually just working on it for several months, has given us all a lot of knowledge about what it's going to require to do this," he said.

There's been an outpouring of support for the project from the community.

Ludlow Wines owner Mike Anagnostou says the need for a neighborhood grocery store is great.

"It's a tremendous need," he said. "It almost lends itself to a quality of life issue."

Clifton Town Meeting President Ben Pantoja says a grocery store will provide an economic boost to the community.

"Any grocery store would really bring people here and once they're here they're going to the restaurants and the movie theatre and everything else we have to offer," he said.

In addition to the sale of shares, the co-op board members say they've gotten a number of financial pledges and they hope to have the purchase completed within the next few months.

The co-op steering committee plans to hold an informational meeting 2-4 p.m. Sunday at  Ludlow Wines in Clifton and 7 p.m. Monday on the second floor of the Clifton Cultural Arts Center.

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