By Matthew Claxton, Langley Advance June 28, 2011
Hundreds of people checked out images of a proposed new IGA for Fort Langley Thursday.
The plans for a new IGA grocery store in Fort Langley attracted a lot of attention from curious locals at an open house held Thursday in the town’s Community Hall. The Fort IGA burned to the ground in early January, after someone apparently tried to cut their way through metal bars in an attempted break in. The new version, unveiled in sketches Thursday, would be set farther back from Glover Road, along Mavis Avenue. The 10,300 square foot main floor would be topped by a 1,150 square foot office mezzanine on the second floor.
Fronting the corner of Glover and Mavis would be two small retail and office buildings, both two storeys tall. They would be connected with a second-storey walkway at the corner, creating a small open plaza at ground level. Parking would be moved back away from the street. Betty Perret and Eunice Thompson were among the residents of the Fort and surrounding areas who came out to have a look. Both were pleased with the new design. “And it’s in keeping, too, with the rest of Fort Langley,” said Perret. “Unless the council fouls it up,” quipped Thompson. Both women were frequent shoppers there. “I bought everything here,” said Thompson, adding that she has missed the store since it burned down.
Jasmine Marjanovic said the business community has missed having a local grocery store too. “It’s had a huge impact,” said Marjanovic, the owner of Cranberries Naturally. Kurt Alberts, the former Township mayor and Fort resident, chaired a meeting earlier this year to gather suggestions for the new store’s design. He said a lot of the comments gathered then are part of the plans unveiled on Thursday. “We’ve had kind of an overwhelming positive response,” Alberts said.
After viewing the drawings, the most common response was “When can construction start?” Alberts said. According to the Lee family, which owns the IGA site, along with other IGA outlets in Langley, more than 350 people attended the open house, with many filling out comment cards. After going through the feedback, the family plans to move forward with seeking a development permit from Langley Township.
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