By this summer, residents of downtown Roanoke will be able to shop for groceries within blocks of their homes.
Jonathan Kenny and Arlene Fields, owners of Roanoke-based Comfort Cuisine, a catering company, are making plans to open a full service grocery store at 16 W. Church Ave., called Sixteen West Marketplace, inside a building that also will house apartments on its upper level this year.
Their store , set to open in August, will stock fresh produce, meat, a deli, a bakery, beer, wine and cheeses. Check out today’s story for the details. Kenny and Fields also plan to open a coffee shop and restaurant on the building’s second floor.
The new grocer’s entrance into downtown comes just after recent U.S. Census show a substantial increase in people living in condos and apartments inside Roanoke’s history buildings. The number of downtown residents shot up more than 1,600 percent from 2000 to 2010, according to the census. For years, advocates of downtown living have discussed the need for a grocery store within walking distance for residents. They have said that new amenities in downtown Roanoke will continue to spark growth in its residential scene.
Read my story in today’s Business section about the rise in downtown’s residential population and some new apartment projects that are on the horizon.