A letter to the editor in Fort Worth highlights two perceived issues with a new grocery store:
The new H-E-B grocery store that was just announced is not really in Fort Worth, in my book. That area is basically Keller or Alliance. If they build a store inside Loop 820, you could call it Fort Worth.
I have no intention of ever driving on Interstate 35W (also known as one of the worst death-trap highways in the state) to go grocery shopping.
In the future, I hope the company might consider North Main in the new Panther Island complex, the Hemphill corridor, Berry Street, Eighth Ave, South Main, Rosedale Street, University Drive or even Lancaster Avenue, to jump start that area.
I talked with a few of my friends, and they have told me, no way are they driving to the far north to buy some taters.
How exactly do companies decide where to locate their stores? Generally, I imagine locating near a major highway is a good thing. That road can help bring customers and suppliers to and from the location. The new location is right near an existing Kroger (as well as other big box stores). The highway might enable more access than if located in a neighborhood with smaller nearby roads.
At the same time, there might be other areas that also would like to have a grocery store. How about in a denser or walkable neighborhood? Bunching a lot of retail options near the highway might not be terribly accessible for some.
The second matter involves which community the new store is in. The official address is in Fort Worth. However, it is quite a ways north of the center of the city. It is a block or so away from the Alliance Town Center mall. This might technically be Fort Worth but it is a sprawling location. (There is also the matter of the planned community of Alliance which includes part of multiple municipalities.)
This hints at the sprawling nature of some cities in the United States, particularly in the Sunbelt. Fort Worth is surrounded by suburban neighborhoods and roadways. Just a short drive from this store location and one is in another municipality as the city sprawls northward.
Let us see how the potential grocery shoppers respond to this new store. This is a sizable investment for a company and I am guessing they imagine a good probability of success.