RICHMOND. Va. (WRIC) — A new grocery store in Richmond’s historic Church Hill neighborhood has officially opened its doors.
The Market at 25th held their grand opening and ribbon-cutting ceremony on Monday with several city leaders in attendance.
For residents of Richmond’s East End, a locally owned grocery store has been decades in the making.
“I’m hoping this is a new beginning for the all of us in the whole community,” said shopper Darlene Crutchfield. “It’s going to make a great difference to me because I can walk here, I can’t walk to Walmart.”
Officials say it will serve as a central hub for neighbors to gather and connect, and be an inviting place for residents to shop for affordable groceries
“It was really important to make sure I listened to everybody,” said Market at 25th Developer Norm Gold. “From millennials to those who live in Creighton’s court, to living in Church Hill North, to really find out what would be the right store to be ingrained in the community.”
The store features locally sourced produce, meat and seafood, along with a hot food bar, salad bar, sushi station, coffee bar, pharmacy, Lyft Lounge, florist and programming from PBS KIDS Ready To Learn and The VCU Health Hub.
“This is more than a grocery store,” said Gold, “this is a grocery store that’s part of the community.”
On Wednesday, 8News got an inside look around at the grocery store.
“We haven’t had a store in this area for over 26 years,” said Market at 25th Ambassador Johnnie Green III. “And it’s a blessing for us to have this here.”
When shoppers enter the store, they will be greeted by flowers and reminders of the history of Church Hill.
Mayor Levar M. Stoney also spoke on Monday about the impact the store will have on the community.
“It’s a big day for the city of Richmond,” Stoney said. “It’s a big day for the east end. Now our folks will be able to shop right here in the city of Richmond, not go across county lines to purchase affordable groceries, nutritious groceries for their families. That’s a huge deal for the city.”
The store is working with ‘Virginia’s Finest‘ program through the department of agriculture to carry locally made products.
“Long term vendors from the state of Virginia, all the way to smaller vendors that are just starting … for example, our ‘Nona’s.’ This is the first time they are appearing in a retail grocery store,” Market at 25th Director Jae Scott said.
The store will be helping with transportation for shoppers by offering free van rides home for RRHA residents, as well as $3 Lyft rides.
The market, located at 25th Street and Fairmount Avenue, also features the locally-run ‘Hope Pharmacy.’