GREENSBORO, N.C. — A shopping plaza that was once the home of the Renaissance Co-op Grocery store could soon have a new business moving in.
“We’re looking very hard to see if we can find a grocery to replace RCC,” said Michael Schiftan, principal with DevCon Resources.
Renaissance Co-op closed it’s doors permanently in January 2019. The store couldn’t stay afloat financially and experienced declining sales, which ultimately caused it’s demise.
Now, a real estate company contracted with Self-Help, the owners of the plaza, are looking to fill the vacancy with another grocery store to fill the needs of the people in the community.
“Right, now we’re just working again to identify an independent grocer because this shop is smaller than a large mainstream grocery store would undertake,” Schiftan said.
The closing of the grocery store was blow for the community.
“We ran out of options, and so you resort to chips and you resort to sugary stuff at the convenience stores,” said Joshua Garrett, who grew up in the area.
Garrett now owns and operates JMG Elite Fitness, which leases out of one of the storefronts in the plaza. He says he’s seen firsthand how the closing of the store has impacted his community.
“African-Americans, we deal with high blood pressure, diabetes, strokes, cholesterol and if you look into the community you see so many people dealing with those illnesses,” Garrett said.
Since the co-op left, other businesses have come in like an event center, barbershop and a take-out restaurant, which is under construction, giving people in the area some hope that more will soon follow.
“We’d like to see it be a neighborhood community shopping center, one that supports,” Schiftan said.
There are still several vacant storefronts they are looking to fill.