A new store project from Weis Markets reflects a rising real-estate trend among grocery retailers: anchoring mixed-use properties.
The Mid-Atlantic grocer plans to build a 64,000-square-foot supermarket as part of Bayberry Town Center, a 280,000-square-foot shopping center in the 1,500-acre Village of Bayberry master-planned community due to break ground this fall in Middletown, Delaware, developer Blenheim Group reported.
Along with a Weis grocery store and fuel center (the latter located on a frontal outparcel), the mixed-use development is slated to include 31,000 square feet of on-site office space, approximately 185,000 square feet of adjacent retail and restaurant space on nine pad sites (including three with drive-thru capability), and 145 on-site townhouses. Located along Boyds Corner Road (Route 896) between Jamison Corner Road and Routes 1 and 13, the project also features 600 acres of open space (with walking paths, parks, playgrounds, picnic pavilions, lakes and luxury clubhouses) and connects to 3,400 current and future homes via internal streets and walking trails.
The Weis supermarket, to include a pharmacy and a Weis 2 Go online grocery pickup station, is expected to open in 2025.
“Weis Markets is eager to serve The Village of Bayberry and the surrounding communities in the years ahead,” Dennis Curtin, director of public relations for Weis Markets, said in a statement. “When open, our new Bayberry Town Center store will offer a strong combination of quality, service, convenience and value.”
Newark, Delaware-based Blenheim noted that Bayberry Town Center, being leased by LMT Commercial, will bring “much-needed goods and services” for Village of Bayberry residents and the surrounding community. According to the developer, the project will house Middletown’s largest grocery-anchored center and bring a combination of grocery, upscale shopping, restaurants, services, banking and health care.
“It’s a significant milestone for us here at Bayberry to welcome Weis Markets and kick-start additional leasing activity at the future Bayberry Town Center, the final phase in our multi-year development of The Village of Bayberry master planned community,” stated Jay Sonecha, president of Blenheim Group. “Located in one of Delaware’s fastest-growing residential areas, Bayberry Town Center will give local residents a new, first-class grocery option, while also providing convenient access to quality goods and services and enjoyable dining and entertainment with family and friends. We look forward to naming more tenants in the coming months and breaking ground.”
Weis Market’s Bayberry store fits into an upgraded, $160 million capital expenditures plan that the Sunbury, Pennsylvania-based chain announced in late April.
Plans call for 20 store remodels, one store expansion and one new store that will open in 2024, the regional grocer said. According to the company’s annual report, 2023 capital spending also is slated to include the acquisition of sites for future stores, new technology purchases, and distribution facility and transportation fleet upgrades, plus carryover projects from 2022.
“We have five new stores in active planning stages,” Chairman and CEO Jonathan Weis told shareholders at Weis Markets’ annual meeting. “Our budget also includes thousands of store improvement projects, which improve efficiencies and drive sales.”
On Thursday, the retailer held a grand reopening event for its remodeled store in Duryea, Pennsylvania, and announced a major remodel for its store in nearby Nanticoke, with the project slated to be completed later this year. Overall, Weis Markets operates 197 stores in Pennsylvania, Maryland, Delaware, New Jersey, New York, West Virginia and Virginia.