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Thursday, April 7, 2011

A Grocery Store for Northwest Huntsville

We may not have a Trader Joe's yet, but another grocery store owned by the same German family is opening its second Huntsville store. Aldi, which already has one store under construction on 72 West in front of TJ Maxx, will begin construction soon on its second area store, in 12,500 sq. ft. of the old Office Depot at the intersection of University and Sparkman. This puts Aldi in one of the youngest (thus, more frugal) areas of Huntsville, with nearly 10,000 college students nearby. This will also give shoppers in the area an alternative to Walmart (too crowded) and Earth Fare (awesome, but too expensive for everyday goods).


Stephen said...

This is great news. It's nice to see empty space in some of the older shopping centers being occupied by desirable stores. Hopefully, Aldi will spark more redevelopment of that center the way Earth Fare has in its.

Transit News said...

It's good news, but I'm sure a lot of people can't help but feel like it wasn't the news we were hoping for. How many suggestions were there for new Aldi locations on the Huntsville Ideas Map?

Howeever, it's worth mentioning that Aldi's parent company also owns Trader Joe's, and aspects of the stores are similar - namely, a reliance on store-label products as opposed to national brands. Hopefully, Aldi's experience in Huntsville will show whether the market is right for Trader Joe's to move in as well.

For reference, the NY Times recently had a good article characterizing the Aldi chain.

James said...

^There actually were a lot of suggestions for an Aldi store, especially in NW Huntsville. Not as many as Trader Joe's, of course, but it was a substantial number.

Anonymous said...

Aldi and Trader Joe's are not owned by the same parent company.

They were both started by brothers, but that's where the ties end.

They are seperate entities and attract a very different clientele.

Aldi attracts a budget conscious, typically lower income shopper, where Trader Joes attracts an upscale, urban, health conscious shopper. Also, Trader Joes only locates in larger metropolitan areas, like 1 million+ people.

As for Huntsville, I would not hold your breath for a Trader Joes anytime soon.

James said...

Never said anything about being owned by the same company-- just the same family, the Albrechts. The Aldi stores in the US are owned by Aldi Sued (Aldi South), while Trader Joe's is owned by Aldi Nord (Aldi North).

Also, I was unaware that Athens, Georgia had a million people. Or Lincoln, Nebraska. Or Charleston, South Carolina.

Anonymous said...

I was responding to transit news when he/she said that Aldi's parent company also owns Trader Joe's. That's not true.

I stand corrected on the smaller metro areas, I did not realize that Trader Joe's had expanded into such small markets. I can see Athens though, it's an artsy college town. Not sure about Lincoln, NE or Charleston.

I still don't see a Trader Joes in Huntsville, though. I have lived in numerous areas that had Trader Joes and shopped at many of them. I'm pretty familiar with the demographic that Trader Joes targets. I just don't see enough of that demographic in Huntsville.

Lee K. Seitz said...

Hallelujah, my wife will be delighted! And I think it's great to fill in old, empty buildings rather than to just keep spreading out further and further. Now home come the one on 72 doesn't have a sign indicating what they're building? And I take it there's no time line given on how soon either will open?