Research has shown that a grocery store is not in the future for the old Food Lion building.
The Volusia County Property Appraiser site shows that 10 years ago this April Halifax Associates, based out of Missouri, purchased the Food Lion on East Granada Boulevard.
“Halifax Associates purchased the operating Food Lion 10 years ago,” Tim Davis, whose name is on the SVN sign in front of the building. “Three years later Food Lion closed its grocery stores in the area.”
Residents have longed for a new grocery store to replace the Food Lion, even petitioning for a Trader Joe’s years ago, but whatever goes up in the spot at the corner of East Granada Boulevard and Halifax Drive, it isn’t likely to be a grocery store.
“We spent three years going down that path and no one wanted to open a grocery store there,” Davis said.
Ormond Beach Economic Development Director Joe Mannarino agreed, saying the city has explored the idea and determined another grocery store wasn’t viable due to the population and the close proximity of three Publix grocery stores in the area.
Price said development plans are being considered for a six-story luxury apartment building with retail space on the bottom floor. The street-level space could include businesses like an accounting office, hair salon and a coffee shop.
There is no question that the current building would be leveled.
“We would do what is called a city urban edge,” Davis said. “The building would be closer to the street and parking would be in the back.”
Fountain Square across the street already demonstrates this type of development.
Davis said it would be a year before any type of groundbreaking could be planned.
“The city of Ormond Beach is a tough municipality to get projects permitted,” Davis said.
Mannarino took issue with Davis' statement.
“I would challenge that statement,” Mannarino said. “The city expedites the permitting process in our community.”
Mannarino said he was familiar with the development concept but that no proposal had come before the city.
“I would like to find out about the master plan and expedite as fast as possible,” Mannarino said. “We have a master plan for the downtown as a more densely developed area.”
Currently the city has a 75-foot height limit which should pose no issue for the proposed structure.
“We don’t make the deal. The decision has to be made by the owner,” Mannarino said.