AUGUSTA, Ga. (WJBF) – UPDATE – Augusta commissioners approved the special exemption Tuesday with a 9-1 vote.
AUGUSTA, Ga. (WJBF) – A new grocery store could be coming to South Augusta.
“A grocery store come to that area, is a very welcoming thing for that area,” said Commissioner John Clarke.
Developers are looking to build an Aldi at 3121 Peach Orchard Road, near the Bobby Jones interchange. For Clarke, the area a ‘food swamp.’
He said, “Whenever you got a food desert, where you do not have a grocery store, you have every fast-food chain known to mankind in that vicinity.”
Aldi is seeking a special exemption from Augusta commissioners to pave the way to build a limited assortment store. Commissioner Clarke believes market survey scores are looking good.
He said, “You’re getting more people there, you’re getting rooftops. The medium income is going up, crime rate going down so you got to have a lot of things come together.”
“South Augusta has been very vital to Augusta, Georgia and I definitely think that is an up-and-coming area,” said Commissioner Catherine Smith McKnight.
It’s on Tuesday’s agenda for commissioners to discuss the Aldi store plan. The building would be more than 19,000 square feet replacing the current one, University Health Care’s South Augusta Campus.
The grocery store would be smaller than the current building by about 200 square feet
Clarke added, “Business does attract business so maybe this is a first step to redevelop that neighborhood and to redevelop that area. It’s going to take time.”
NewsChannel 6 spoke with some neighbors that live nearby University Health’s South Augusta Campus where the Aldi would go. They declined a formal interview but said they have no complaints about the grocery store proposal and hope traffic won’t be affected too drastically.