By Karen Carr Keefe
Senior Contributing Writer
Town Supervisor Peter Marston confirmed that Aldi is close to closing a deal that would bring the popular discount grocery store to Grand Island.
He said the plans look good. Also, the chances appear good that Islanders can look forward to putting Aldi on their in-town shopping route.
“It’s not on the table yet, but we’ve seen everything. … I’d say it’s 90%,” Marston said.
The plan is for Aldi to go in at Staley and Stony Point roads, at the old information center across the road from Tim Hortons.
“They have been to the town with preliminary plans and they are working forward on their final engineering,” Marston said.
“That’s a welcome change,” the supervisor said of bringing the Aldi’s brand to Grand Island. He said some residents may say the store should choose a different site on the Island, but he said that’s not something the town can control.
Marston said the location is at the “busiest part of the Thruway on Grand Island, and that’s the busiest part of Grand Island Boulevard on the Island. Those two factors right there, and they’re looking to capture commuter traffic. So, those are two things right there that make it a win-win for them.”
Highway Superintendent Dick Crawford pointed out that traffic patterns have been altered with the closing of Exit 18B for reconstruction of the Thruway overpass at Beaver Island Parkway.
“Once that bridge is reopened – people’s driving patterns have changed at the north end of the Island – how they leave,” he said. “How many people are going to continue to go down Whitehaven and how many will go back to that old route of going all the way back to Stony (Point Road) to Staley and getting on that way?”
The overpass reconstruction project began in March of 2023 and was originally projected to be complete by the end of the year. Weather and supply delays pushed the likely end date to sometime this spring.