Boise-based Albertsons Inc. plans to vacate its store at 10 N. Pines in Spokane Valley, where it has done business for 26 years, by the end of this year. The supermarket says its lease expires then, although the building owner, Harlan Douglass, of Spokane, said he was unaware Albertsons was leaving.
Its disappointing, says Danielle Killpack, a Portland, Ore.-based spokeswoman for Albertsons, but we will look for new opportunities to make our customers lives easier in the Spokane Valley. Hopefully the other stores that we have will serve as a strong replacement.
Killpack says Albertsons had sought unsuccessfully to negotiate a lease renewal on the 43,000-square-foot building.
When asked why Albertsons would be vacating the building, Douglass claimed, though, that the supermarket chains plan to do so was news to him.
I have not heard that, he said. There has not been a letter written on that nor has it come from their breath.
Douglass said he doesnt know when the stores lease expires and doesnt know whether hed been negotiating with the company for renewal because he deals with a number of different leases on properties he owns. When asked whether he plans to lease the space to another tenant, he said, How can I do that with Albertsons there?
I have no plans for the space, Douglass said. How would I have plans if I didnt know they were going? I guess itd be an empty building, wouldnt it?
Killpack says Douglass, despite his assertions to the contrary, is well aware of the contract negotiations.
He exercised his option on this contract, she says. He absolutely knew there were negotiations (in progress). He was aware that the answer may be that we would decide to leave.
The North Pines building was erected in 1977, and Albertsons has leased it since then. It was remodeled in 1987, and Spokane County assesses its value at about $2.7 million.
Albertsons plans to place as many as possible of the 50 workers employed there now in its other Spokane-area stores until it can reopen in another location in the Sprague-and-Pines area, Killpack says.
We will look for opportunities to replace that store with something new in that area, she says. Weve had a great run. Weve enjoyed the success at that store. We have a great customer base there.
Inventory from the North Pines store will be distributed to other Albertsons stores and to food banks here, Killpack says.
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