Interest in a Western Springs Mariano’s goes back years before Monday’s announcement that the to-be-closed Dominick’s at Garden Market Shopping Center would be one of 11 locations purchased by the parent company of Mariano’s.
Village manager Patrick Higgins said at Monday night’s Western Springs Board of Trustees meeting that he and community development director Martin Scott had talks with Roundy’s representatives three years ago, when the company was looking to enter the Chicago area with its Mariano’s brand.
“We agreed at the end of that meeting that there wasn’t really a space in Western Springs for Mariano’s at that time, but if Dominick’s ever became available, to keep it in mind,” Higgins said.
That seemingly far-out idea came to fruition last October, when Safeway, the parent company of Dominick’s, announced it would be leaving the Chicago area and that all of its Dominick’s locations would be sold off or, if buyers weren’t found, closed on Dec. 28.
Higgins called Mariano’s a “real quality retailer,” and the store's reported one-to-two-month conversion timeframe after the $36 million deal with Safeway is finalized later this month, if realized, would be “great” for the village’s sales-tax base.
“[Finance director Grace Turi] and I budgeted six months of lost revenues from Dominick’s [closing],” he said.
The village manager said he doesn’t expect many renovations to the space will be necessary.
“The purchase itself is attributed to the demographics of Western Springs and the surrounding communities primarily, and secondarily, to Safeway and Dominick’s. That’s a real quality facility,” Higgins said.
“I don’t know how much [Mariano’s] will want to do or have to do.”
According to a Chicago Tribune report Monday, current Dominick's employees will have to reapply for jobs at Mariano's, and Mariano's executives say those applicants won't be given preference over others.
The other Dominick's locations slated to become Mariano's are located in Aurora, Buffalo Grove, Chicago, Gurnee, Northfield, Park Ridge, Shorewood and Westchester.
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