Grocery Store Coming To Downtown Cincinnati? - Cincinnati News, FOX19-WXIX TV

Grocery Store Coming To Downtown Cincinnati?

(CINCINNATI) -- Cincinnati is buzzing right now with plans for a new store that some say --more than the Banks or stadiums or museums -- is what downtown really needs if it wants to attract residents -- a grocery store.

FOX19's Chris Shaw has the latest on that missing ingredient.

Any time you talk to people about moving downtown, you always hear two concern -- crime and the lack of a grocery store.

One of those is being met.

People who live with downtown's hustle and bustle have one thing at the top of their shopping list.

"Grocery store," says Meredith Brown, a downtown resident.

At the very least, a place close by where you can get an orange, and orange juice, under the same roof.

The plan for this empty building though is even more ambitious.

"Something like a Kroger, but on a much smaller basis," said Len Bleh, a downtown store owner.

Len Bleh owns the meat market on East Court Street. By spring, he hopes to open a full line grocery store next door. It will have produce, dairy, eggs and bread. And when you couple it with the meat market,  there will be nothing else like it downtown.

"It's generating a bigger buzz than I ever expected," said Bleh.

Especially from thrilled residents.

"That would be great, particularly for little, day to day conveniences," said Brown.

But the bigger impact, along with the new restaurants and condos, could be drawing new people to live downtown.

"Certainly, if there's a grocery store, that would go a long way in making it more attractive," said Mike Lehrter of Fort Thomas.

And more bankable for realtor Christine Schoonover.

"It's the chicken and the egg, which is going to come first? Are we going to get the grocery store and bring more people? Yes, it will bring more people," said Schoonover.

Maybe even some who never considered making this home.

"It might help change my mind, especially with the job down here, I would have somewhere close to get food," said Katherine Hammer, a downtown worker.

And this location even offers somewhere to park. You do have to pay for it, but many don't mind if walking's an option, too.

Two questions we heard a lot today are prices --  Bleh says he'll keep them in line with the supermarkets, and store hours. It may not be open on Sundays or at night.

FOX19.com staff

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