http://pleasantonweekly.com/print/story/print/2012/05/04/guest-opinion-a-new-grocery-store-for-meadow-plaza


Pleasanton Weekly

Opinion - May 4, 2012

Guest opinion: A new grocery store for Meadow Plaza

by Tom Foley

Several years ago Nob Hill Foods closed its doors and left Meadow Plaza Shopping Center without an anchor tenant. After 20 years of being located next to a grocery store, surrounding small businesses found themselves without a magnet retailer.

Fast forward to 2012, and the neighborhood is still suffering from an abandoned, vacant storefront. Needless to say, we have long sought to re-tenant the anchor supermarket space.

We considered ourselves fortunate when Walmart enthusiastically stepped up and offered to open one of its first Neighborhood Market grocery stores in this space. This announcement was met with cheers of hope from Meadow Plaza customers, neighbors and tenants.

The same neighbors that celebrated with us then began to receive anonymous fliers at their homes. These fliers distorted the facts and made baseless threats. It was an unsuccessful effort to divide our community regarding something that has united us since Nob Hill closed.

We thank the city of Pleasanton and its Planning Commission for carefully considering this issue and agreeing that Meadow Plaza should be able to tenant its vacant supermarket building with another grocery market that is different only in name. We are disappointed that Councilman Matt Sullivan has now appealed this decision to the City Council, offering no reason as to why the city should further consider this matter.

Special interests want to subject our neighborhood and its small businesses to isolation. They are concerned about competition and don't have the best interest of our community and its consumers at heart. This neighborhood will not be deterred by these efforts.

We thank Walmart for investing in the future of northeast Pleasanton. We encourage the City Council to uphold the Planning Commissions decision and allow Meadow Plaza and its tenant businesses a chance to succeed.

One of our neighborhood supporters said it best: "All over Pleasanton there are grocery stores without a neighborhood. We are a neighborhood without a grocery store."

--Tom Foley is the property manager of Meadow Plaza

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