Toledo Talk

West Toledo Krogers development conversation

I'll admit, I hadn't put too much thought into the debate on whether or not the Notre Dame Sisters should allow Kroger to develop on their property. I appreciate the love for the trees and green space, and personally value seeing it as a I drive by. That said, I've got no skin in the game.

This past week I was invited to join this FB group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/PreserveMonroeSecorCampus/

I appreciate the passion, and totally get where they are coming from. I do think that part of town is too dense and poorly planed. I do think Kroger could get away with redeveloping their currently property. Regardless, there are clearly multiple sides and voices in this argument.

Editorial from the nuns: http://www.toledoblade.com/Opinion/2015/07/05/Kroger-sale-is-best-for-Sisters-of-Notre-Dame-and-the-Toledo-community.html

Letter to editor from the nuns:
http://www.toledoblade.com/Letters-to-the-Editor/2015/07/04/Kroger-proposal-is-the-best-alternative.html

What are your thoughts on this? Are you FOR Krogers taking over part of the Nun's campus, or are you AGAINST it? For both sides, I'm curious WHY you feel that way.

created by upso on Jul 12, 2015 at 04:40:31 pm     Business     Comments: 207

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So-I did some quick digging. The developers tweeted this week, that it's nearing completion. I checked the 365 site, and they still have 2017 listed with no open date. I messaged Secor Square, and they said that the date hasn't been announced yet, and to stay tuned to the FB page for announcements. I then asked if they could confirm a 2017 opening, and they repeated the previous message. Weird.

posted by ahmahler on Feb 11, 2017 at 07:42:28 pm     #  

WF 365 does seem to be taking an unusually long time to open. One would think those stores would be quite modular and could be thrown open in relatively short order.

posted by Foodie on Feb 12, 2017 at 04:16:04 am     #  

Great research. Thanks!

posted by upso on Feb 12, 2017 at 08:09:06 pm     #  

As everyone knows Andersons is closing and has been losing over 2 million a year for the last 4 years.

However, the last half of 2016 was the first time their food/produce/cheese section saw a big decline in sales.

Undoubtedly, Fresh Thyme was the culprit, and I unfortunately am one of the customers who, like many, made the switch.

Have to think that Fresh Thyme bearing Wholr Foods to market hasn't helped. To top it off Fresh Markey has a loyal base as well.

I do expect WF to open, but I am not sure it makes it too long. Very competitive market and being the last one in, isn't good.

posted by Xbuckeyex on Feb 12, 2017 at 10:39:23 pm     #  

I have a suspicion that the 365 concept is right on for this market. I'm hearing it's VERY price competitive.

posted by ahmahler on Feb 12, 2017 at 11:41:04 pm     #  

Having never gone into Whole Foods, Fresh Thyme or Fresh Market, I wonder about market saturation. I'm 43, middle class, Sylvania resident and runner. I do eat healthy and fresh as much as I can. I'm probably the prime market.

I am just not drawn to those stores. Maybe it's just the ingrained Toledo attitude of "I can just get everything at Kroger/Meijer". I hardly shopped the Anderson's. I just saw higher prices.

I'm probably missing out and not denigrating any of those stores at all, just pointing out that there are plenty like me who are just indifferent and probably not enough people to support all those stores.

posted by JoeyGee on Feb 13, 2017 at 09:30:55 am     #   2 people liked this

Changing shopping habits is pretty difficult. If you shop at Kroger and Meijer, it's probably convenient. And those stores have done a really good job of stepping up their game, both in quality of produce, and availability of organically made products. The days of "destination" grocery, is fading. Whole Foods , made their mark in that idea. The newer stores (Fresh Market, Fresh Thyme, Walt Churchill's and eventually 365) are built around the idea that their average customer will hit the market 3-5x/ week, and be in and out. They are in the habits of the people that live close by. You wouldn't think there was enough business in Sylvania Township to support a huge Meijer, Walmart, plus 3 very large Kroger stores. These small stores only need a fraction of the traffic of the keep rolling. Anderson's closing, only adds to the traffic. There are a lot of people in the West Toledo, Old Orchard, Ottawa Hills, that love this type of shopping.

posted by ahmahler on Feb 13, 2017 at 10:30:07 am     #  

I think you summed it up perfectly.

I stop at Fresh Thyme 3-4 times per week. I love their fresh soup, about half the cost of Zoup or Panera and just as good.

I can be in and out by the time it takes me to park at Kroger and get my shopping cart.

Quick, easy, overall very affordable and at times even cheaper, combine that with good customer service and, well how do I put this, "different" clientele and its more than worth it.

posted by Xbuckeyex on Feb 13, 2017 at 11:05:43 am     #   1 person liked this

I guess I'm not the demographic, then. With 3 very active kids, I have to do my shopping on the weekends, usually in one shot. If I need food in the middle of the week, I'll probably end up in a drive through. I don't have time to shop during the week. I don't think I'd want to shop that much during the week if I did have the time.

That's just me. I do hope there is a market for all these. That's a great sign for the area if there is.

posted by JoeyGee on Feb 13, 2017 at 01:02:47 pm     #   3 people liked this

Did she really say that? A FB post from Councilman Yvonne Harper came up on my feed as follows:

Just left from City Council Chambers a little a lady walked up to me and - said Ms. Harper do you own your home - I told her someday - she said well if you want to sell - do I want someone to tell me who to sell it to - then why are you trying to tell me who to sell mine & they own their property but they cannot afford to keep it up because of the aging building & furnace - she walks away & she turn around & let me know she is a nun - the KROGER SITE is a big deal

Jesus People ain't no joke - I want to know why ain't nuns wearing black & white - to identify themselves.

I'm Just Sayin'

Yvonne Harper, Council #4

Seriously? She wants to know why nuns can't be identified by their clothes? We aren't supposed to judge young black youth by their clothes; we aren't supposed to judge women by their clothes. But she's wants to identify a nun by her clothes?!?

(Side note - great point the nun was making!)

posted by MsArcher on Mar 16, 2017 at 02:30:27 pm     #   2 people liked this

I really wish Yvonne did not represent my interests on council. Not a fan, at all.

posted by upso on Mar 16, 2017 at 02:37:06 pm     #   3 people liked this

Side note-they're not telling her to sell to. They're not allowing rezoning.

posted by ahmahler on Mar 16, 2017 at 02:59:23 pm     #   1 person liked this

MsArcher posted at 02:30:27 PM on Mar 16, 2017:

Did she really say that? A FB post from Councilman Yvonne Harper came up on my feed as follows:

Just left from City Council Chambers a little a lady walked up to me and - said Ms. Harper do you own your home - I told her someday - she said well if you want to sell - do I want someone to tell me who to sell it to - then why are you trying to tell me who to sell mine & they own their property but they cannot afford to keep it up because of the aging building & furnace - she walks away & she turn around & let me know she is a nun - the KROGER SITE is a big deal

Jesus People ain't no joke - I want to know why ain't nuns wearing black & white - to identify themselves.

I'm Just Sayin'

Yvonne Harper, Council #4

Seriously? She wants to know why nuns can't be identified by their clothes? We aren't supposed to judge young black youth by their clothes; we aren't supposed to judge women by their clothes. But she's wants to identify a nun by her clothes?!?

(Side note - great point the nun was making!)

A) Yvonne Harper is an embarrassment.
B) I have had a significant experience with women religious. I think her encounter is fabricated. I seriously suggest that somebody get a better description of the little old lady and maybe review camera footage to see if it even happened. I think she had this encounter just like Steve Steele was jumped. Nuns may have an opinion, but they don't walk away, then turn around and say "Gotcha, I'm a nun."
C) Why aren't the crooks on council wearing orange?

posted by justread on Mar 16, 2017 at 03:13:25 pm     #   10 people liked this

"Jesus People Ain't No Joke" I'm going to need that on a t-shirt and maybe some bumper stickers.

That's gold, Jerry. Gold!

posted by JoeyGee on Mar 16, 2017 at 03:16:07 pm     #   1 person liked this

If your neighbor wanted sell his house to MadJack for MJ's Whiskey and Porn Emporium with 25 cent movies and jello shots, would you be OK because it was their property?

posted by SensorG on Mar 16, 2017 at 03:20:22 pm     #   4 people liked this

"That's gold, Jerry. Gold!"

Hah! A Kenny Bania reference. They should call it Roundtine.

posted by jr on Mar 16, 2017 at 03:33:42 pm     #   2 people liked this

@justread:

"C) Why aren't the crooks on council wearing orange?"

Because orange is the new black? Dunno, I'm just asking....

posted by Foodie on Mar 16, 2017 at 03:36:34 pm     #   1 person liked this

SensorG posted at 03:20:22 PM on Mar 16, 2017:

If your neighbor wanted sell his house to MadJack for MJ's Whiskey and Porn Emporium with 25 cent movies and jello shots, would you be OK because it was their property?

So the Kroger Corporation is the equivalent of a whiskey and porn emporium?

Hmmm..........who knew?

posted by Foodie on Mar 16, 2017 at 03:38:18 pm     #   1 person liked this

SensorG posted at 03:20:22 PM on Mar 16, 2017:

If your neighbor wanted sell his house to MadJack for MJ's Whiskey and Porn Emporium with 25 cent movies and jello shots, would you be OK because it was their property?

Whew. I thought he was going to say daycare.

posted by justread on Mar 16, 2017 at 03:39:39 pm     #   6 people liked this

MsArcher posted at 02:30:27 PM on Mar 16, 2017:

Did she really say that? A FB post from Councilman Yvonne Harper came up on my feed as follows:

Just left from City Council Chambers a little a lady walked up to me and - said Ms. Harper do you own your home - I told her someday - she said well if you want to sell - do I want someone to tell me who to sell it to - then why are you trying to tell me who to sell mine & they own their property but they cannot afford to keep it up because of the aging building & furnace - she walks away & she turn around & let me know she is a nun - the KROGER SITE is a big deal

Jesus People ain't no joke - I want to know why ain't nuns wearing black & white - to identify themselves.

I'm Just Sayin'

Yvonne Harper, Council #4

Seriously? She wants to know why nuns can't be identified by their clothes? We aren't supposed to judge young black youth by their clothes; we aren't supposed to judge women by their clothes. But she's wants to identify a nun by her clothes?!?

(Side note - great point the nun was making!)

I would love to know why Yvonne Harper, an elected official, can't follow the rules of proper English.

I'm Just Sayin'!

posted by toledolen_ on Mar 16, 2017 at 05:53:21 pm     #   4 people liked this

I have had a significant experience with women religious. I think her encounter is fabricated.

Good point; I actually told a SND nun exactly how to get their zoning request through - cut down all of the trees, and tear down the building, then request the zoning change - voids all of the pleas for trees and preservation. The response was they couldn't do that. Then you don't want to sell that bad.

posted by MsArcher on Mar 16, 2017 at 07:03:12 pm     #  

mrs archer-do you have a PO box, or a place I could have something delivered ? I'd like to send you our beloved copy of The Lorax. I think it might help.

posted by ahmahler on Mar 16, 2017 at 07:17:09 pm     #  

No thneed for that.

posted by justread on Mar 16, 2017 at 07:35:41 pm     #   1 person liked this

But a thneed can be nearly anything you thneed it to be...

posted by ahmahler on Mar 16, 2017 at 08:10:45 pm     #   1 person liked this

justread posted at 03:13:25 PM on Mar 16, 2017:
MsArcher posted at 02:30:27 PM on Mar 16, 2017:

Did she really say that? A FB post from Councilman Yvonne Harper came up on my feed as follows:

Just left from City Council Chambers a little a lady walked up to me and - said Ms. Harper do you own your home - I told her someday - she said well if you want to sell - do I want someone to tell me who to sell it to - then why are you trying to tell me who to sell mine & they own their property but they cannot afford to keep it up because of the aging building & furnace - she walks away & she turn around & let me know she is a nun - the KROGER SITE is a big deal

Jesus People ain't no joke - I want to know why ain't nuns wearing black & white - to identify themselves.

I'm Just Sayin'

Yvonne Harper, Council #4

Seriously? She wants to know why nuns can't be identified by their clothes? We aren't supposed to judge young black youth by their clothes; we aren't supposed to judge women by their clothes. But she's wants to identify a nun by her clothes?!?

(Side note - great point the nun was making!)

A) Yvonne Harper is an embarrassment.
B) I have had a significant experience with women religious. I think her encounter is fabricated. I seriously suggest that somebody get a better description of the little old lady and maybe review camera footage to see if it even happened. I think she had this encounter just like Steve Steele was jumped. Nuns may have an opinion, but they don't walk away, then turn around and say "Gotcha, I'm a nun."

C) Why aren't the crooks on council wearing orange?

Yvonne rambled on about some story at a warehouse district meeting one night, about encountering some 12 year old girls walking the streets in downtown at 2 in the morning, and telling them they needed to get he and go to bed. I think fabricating stories is probably common with her.

posted by Johio83 on Mar 16, 2017 at 09:53:33 pm     #  

upso posted at 02:37:06 PM on Mar 16, 2017:

I really wish Yvonne did not represent my interests on council. Not a fan, at all.

February 2015 Toledo Talk thread Yvonne Harper on Toledo City Clowncil ???? about the possibility of Harper getting appointed to council to fill the spot vacated by Hicks-Hudson.

justread's February 2015 comment about Yvonne Harper:

Hmm, had to retire from the court because she was disruptive and racist.

A history of discipline and conflict.

Owes thousands of dollars in back taxes and is being sued by the State of Ohio.

Her record showed she was evaluated as unsatisfactory in working with the public and couldn't communicate verbally.

She couldn't handle constructive criticism, follow procedures, and had a bad attitude.

Wow. Makes you wonder why she has been elevated above others in the party.

Wait... let me guess. She campaigned against SB5, right?

All is forgiven in the eyes of the Lucas County Labor Party.

From the February 2015 Toledo Blade story

Steven Steel, an at-large Toledo councilman and the county Democratic Party chairman, said he will vote for Ms. Harper.

A couple winners there.

March 2015 Blade op-ed

Council members must make their choices in the interest of all of their constituents, rather than respond to the dictates of political and union bosses.

Council members must elect a new president to succeed Paula Hicks-Hudson. Insiders say that council incumbent Steven Steel is seeking support among his colleagues for the position, and has the backing of local private-sector unions that traditionally have exercised broad political influence on the council.

The county Democratic Party and its organized-labor allies are leaning on council members to appoint Yvonne Harper, the party’s executive director. But a review by The Blade of Ms. Harper’s record suggests that here too, council members can find better candidates.

The Blade op-ed writer suggested that Toledo would be better off if someone other than Steel was council president, and someone other than Harper was appointed to council. Reality and the status quo thought differently.

posted by jr on Mar 16, 2017 at 10:30:29 pm     #  

In 2015, I had no idea how bad she really was. :(

posted by justread on Mar 17, 2017 at 06:21:11 am     #   1 person liked this

Carty's diatribe against Kroger's proposed build at the the corner of Monroe and Secor was good for a laugh yesterday.

http://www.toledoblade.com/Op-Ed-Columns/2017/03/19/Kroger-decision-key-test-of-our-city-s-values.html

posted by Ace_Face on Mar 20, 2017 at 11:09:48 am     #  

I also got a good laugh out of Carty's temper tantrum. I'm surprised that dude hasn't has a major coronary yet, he has to have sky high blood pressure with his anger issues.

I hope this isn't an indication he is thinking of running against PH2 for her job again.

posted by classylady on Mar 20, 2017 at 12:00:56 pm     #  

classylady posted at 12:00:56 PM on Mar 20, 2017:

I also got a good laugh out of Carty's temper tantrum. I'm surprised that dude hasn't has a major coronary yet, he has to have sky high blood pressure with his anger issues.

I hope this isn't an indication he is thinking of running against PH2 for her job again.

Carty's bypass in 2004 seems to have done its job.

posted by justread on Mar 20, 2017 at 12:04:41 pm     #  

Any other part of Toledo, under similar circumstances, and this thing is already built. I dont have a dog in this fight (oops thats gonna get me in trouble) but I gotta say, the West Toledo bias is REAL and the East Side might as well be on Mars when it comes to Toledo politics and priorities.

posted by BulldogBuckeye on Mar 20, 2017 at 12:31:43 pm     #  

BTW, Carleton is wrong. The Pburg Kroger is all new, not an expansion. It was just build right next to the old location.

posted by BulldogBuckeye on Mar 20, 2017 at 12:39:41 pm     #  

Per ignazio Messina on Twitter:
Early straw poll of @city_of_toledo council looks like it WILL approve @kroger rezoning for controversial new Monroe/Secor store tomorrow

posted by ahmahler on Mar 20, 2017 at 02:58:12 pm     #  

ahmahler posted at 02:58:12 PM on Mar 20, 2017:Per ignazio Messina on Twitter:
Early straw poll of @city_of_toledo council looks like it WILL approve @kroger rezoning for controversial new Monroe/Secor store tomorrow

I'm not surprised, but I think it's a major mistake.

posted by madjack on Mar 20, 2017 at 03:04:37 pm     #  

hello loves...thread got hijacked by Carlo Sommer

posted by justareviewer on Mar 20, 2017 at 03:19:33 pm     #   2 people liked this

.I too am not surprised. For short term construction jobs they will vote to support the special interests that get them elected. The traffic in that area is already a mess , add at least a traffic light or two on Secor and one or two more on Monroe and with traffic engineering the way it is , good luck navigating through the area. It's called saturation and we'll have to deal with it for generations . If Kroger were good citizens they should entertain the idea of building on their exciting site with the purchase of the Best Buy site.

posted by marving on Mar 20, 2017 at 04:38:47 pm     #   1 person liked this

Council just voted 9-2 to approve.

posted by Foodie on Mar 21, 2017 at 04:28:15 pm     #  

justareviewer posted at 03:19:33 PM on Mar 20, 2017:

hello loves...thread got hijacked by Carlo Sommer

It had to be hijacked by someone.

posted by madjack on Mar 21, 2017 at 04:31:25 pm     #  

Glad to see we have a group of professionals who oversee the activities in their field, just so they can be overturned by people who have no experience or background whatsoever in said field. That's clearly how it's supposed to work.

posted by Johio83 on Mar 21, 2017 at 04:32:13 pm     #   2 people liked this

Foodie posted at 04:28:15 PM on Mar 21, 2017:

Council just voted 9-2 to approve.

Who were the two with sanity?

posted by madjack on Mar 21, 2017 at 04:33:29 pm     #  

Blade just updated that it was 10-2

posted by upso on Mar 21, 2017 at 04:58:14 pm     #  

Was it the Jesus people or the trade union that swayed Harper's vote?

posted by TrilbyGuy on Mar 21, 2017 at 05:09:45 pm     #   1 person liked this

Johio83 posted at 04:32:13 PM on Mar 21, 2017:

Glad to see we have a group of professionals who oversee the activities in their field, just so they can be overturned by people who have no experience or background whatsoever in said field. That's clearly how it's supposed to work.

I don't view it like this. Part of what the plan commission goes off of, is the planning documents that are approved by city council - in other words the city council gives the plan commission written direction in how to do their job. But as time goes by, as elected officials change, elected officials do have the ability of overruling said written direction. Action overruling written direction is easier than a constant updating of planning documents because council has better things to do (theoretically, though I'm not sure what that would be in Toledo's case).

posted by MsArcher on Mar 21, 2017 at 05:21:00 pm     #  

It wasn't just written direction, as I understand it, but two trips before the plan commission that were both denied. Then they went over their heads to City Council. (Can anyone verify the accuracy of that? I may be mixing some issues up with other things that have been going on)

posted by Johio83 on Mar 21, 2017 at 05:25:23 pm     #  

You are right John.

Mrs. Archer..what is the point of having a planning commission if their professional recommendation (which they made 2x) is simply overruled?

Perhaps the planning commission should be scrapped and all things of this nature should go straight to city council as it would be more efficient as "Action overruling written direction is easier than a constant updating of planning documents because council has better things to do."

I don't understand why council was so hell bent on this? There were other possible deals..including the Miller one. I also agree with much of the substance of Carty's response.

My guess is "follow the money." Trade unions feel that this will create jobs and support it. This they give their marching orders to the D's on council.

posted by Dappling2 on Mar 21, 2017 at 09:45:20 pm     #  

Johio83 posted at 05:25:23 PM on Mar 21, 2017:

It wasn't just written direction, as I understand it, but two trips before the plan commission that were both denied. Then they went over their heads to City Council. (Can anyone verify the accuracy of that? I may be mixing some issues up with other things that have been going on)

Kroger did not go over the heads of the plan commission, all zoning change applications go first to the plan commission, who makes a recommendation, and then to city council - even ones that the plan commissions approves of. I can't give specifics, but I am sure there have been requests that had plan commission recommended approval that council turned down.

So, any request goes to the plan commission. They review it, and look at a variety of things (nearby zoning, traffic, etc) including what the current land use plan for the city says about the parcel(s). With that information, they make a recommendation to city council, telling city council that the plan commission thinks city council should approve or reject the request. City council then has to vote on whether to accept or reject the request, taking into consideration all information that it wishes to consider, including the plan commission recommendation.

There are rules that if city council is going against the plan commission recommendation, more than a majority is required - I believe that goes both ways, a reject recommendation must be approved by a super majority, and a approve recommendation must be rejected by a super majority, but I may be wrong on the latter.

posted by MsArcher on Mar 21, 2017 at 09:45:36 pm     #   2 people liked this

Quite a few people on facebook and twitter are pissed off about the way city council voted. Let's see if they remember or forget when they vote when these council members are up for reelection

posted by classylady on Mar 21, 2017 at 10:21:13 pm     #   1 person liked this

classylady posted at 10:21:13 PM on Mar 21, 2017:

Quite a few people on facebook and twitter are pissed off about the way city council voted. Let's see if they remember or forget when they vote when these council members are up for reelection

How many of those disgruntled social media users live in Toledo?

Based upon past local elections, only a small percentage of Toledoans were interested in voting.

For this September's primary, voter turnout in Toledo will be 15 to 20 percent. That's based upon the trend since 2005.

The September 2017 primary chooses the top two mayoral candidates and the top 12 city council at-large candidates who will appear on the November ballot.

The district council seats are up for election in 2019.

http://toledo.oh.gov/government/city-council

Council Members by District

  • District 1: Tyrone Riley
  • District 2: Matt Cherry
  • District 3: Peter Ujvagi
  • District 4: Yvonne Harper
  • District 5: Tom Waniewski
  • District 6: Lindsay Webb

At-large Council Members

  • Cecelia Adams
  • Theresa Gabriel
  • Rob Ludeman
  • Sandy Spang
  • Steven Steel
  • Larry Sykes

The Kroger-Sisters vote was 10-2 in favor. Peter Ujvagi and Sandy Spang voted against.

Earlier this month, the Lucas County Democrat Party made its 2017 endorsements.

  • Paula Hicks-Hudson to remain mayor of Toledo
  • Cecelia Adams to remain an at-large Toledo City Council member
  • Larry Sykes to remain an at-large Toledo City Council member

The party also endorsed challengers for the at-large council seats:

  • Kurt Young
  • Gary Johnson
  • Nick Komives
  • Sam Melden

Wade Kapszukiewicz may still run for mayor of Toledo.

Unless people push the issue, I don't see this Kroger thing being a factor for any mayoral or at-large council candidate in this year's elections.

Any social media outrage about Kroger and Toledo City Council will be replaced by new faux outrage in about ... now.

Nobody will care or remember in August when a few hundred people start thinking about the primary.

But I do think that wannabee muckrakers should heed Dappling2's advice and follow the money. That's always a good place to start. But who has the time and resources for that?

posted by jr on Mar 21, 2017 at 11:26:31 pm     #  

Good point JR, I read some of the posts and most of them don't live in Toledo and live in the burbs. There is one person criticizing people on city council by name for voting this way and he lives in Perrysburg, another critic complaining lives in the Findlay area and another one lives in Temperance. AFIAK none of them have even shopped at that Kroger (it's the one I shop at the most) or would have much reason to be in that area very often.

Reminds me of the Promedica parking garage, quite a few people complaining don't even live in Toledo and most are l ucky if they went to the park once a year.

If Perrysburg, Findlay or Temperance decides to do something considered drastic you never see West Toledoian's making a big stink.

posted by classylady on Mar 22, 2017 at 09:37:08 am     #   3 people liked this

At first I wasn't so thrilled about this new store, but as probably being the one out of all of you that lives the closest, I think now I am actually happy about it. Selfishly, I hope that now I will be able to turn out onto Monroe St. without having to wait for all of the cars going/leaving Kroger that use the Value City Furniture entrance. But more importantly for our neighborhood, this will be a good thing. Sure, the traffic is an issue. But anytime you go somewhere that has a lot of retail (especially newer), there is traffic. I think the Spring Meadows area is bad....For years when, while traveling and I would come across a big shopping area, I would wish that Toledo would have something nice "like that". Sure, there is traffic, but look at the options of places to shop. Now, we are finally getting something similar in West Toledo. Buildings that actually have a personality (awnings, stylish architecture) as opposed to ugly big box buildings. Not to mention, new businesses, much needed hotels, and restaurants to our area. Now we "old West-enders", will get a sprucing up of our area which recently I feared was becoming the tatto parlor/piercings capital of Toledo. (I believe there are now 6 tatto shops between Douglas and Secor).

posted by llz on Mar 22, 2017 at 11:26:38 am     #   2 people liked this

-Now we "old West-enders"

Quick, somebody hold back upso! She didn't mean it!

posted by Johio83 on Mar 22, 2017 at 11:31:30 am     #   2 people liked this

I've accepted the traffic, its been gradually getting congested for the last several years. Certain times of the day you just have to avoid it or take alternate routes. So that doesn't bother me at all anymore.

I also agree, its nice to see a much wider selection of places to eat, especially for lunch. It actually feels like an up and coming area, very similar to where my buddy in Charlotte just built his home. (BTW, their traffic still destroys ours).

Also, based on reading the article it appears part of Krogers proposal was to keep 2 acres of green space and plant 450 additional trees. That is more than sufficient in my opinion.

Since the nuns left the house, the upkeep and landscaping has gone way down hill. The sidewalks aren't edged, weeds are everywhere, dead trees/limbs are everywhere. I full expect Kroger to keep it up much better based on their investment.

posted by Xbuckeyex on Mar 22, 2017 at 12:32:22 pm     #   1 person liked this

Woops, Johio83, didn't realize it came across as it did. I was not referring to anyone in the OWE. I was referring to all of us "oldies" (if 50 is old!); those raised and still living in West Toledo.

Xbuckeyex, Up and Coming is exactly the message I was trying to convey. It seemed like the area had gotten so tired. Now, it's beginning to feel new, almost like a new area in the burbs. And might I add that yes, I HAVE griped about the traffic in that area at times, BUT , we in Toledo are SPOILED when it comes to traffic. So it might take an extra 2-3 minutes to get through that area, big deal. You can get from point A to point B anywhere in this city in just about 20 minutes. NOTHING like other cities!
As far as the current grounds/upkeep.....I hope all the moles that lived on that property don't migrate to my neighborhood! Anyone know if a mole could/would travel underneath Monroe/Secor, or would that be too much? Maybe I better get to Anderson's and buy up all their mole repellents before they are all gone!

posted by llz on Mar 22, 2017 at 03:00:19 pm     #   2 people liked this

Traffic complaints in Toledo always crack me up. Aside from idiot drivers causing accidents that tie up traffic, we don't have traffic issues.

I'll take the "traffic congestion" that comes along with the growth of the area. I think its great that city council approved the Kroger project. I also love seeing the activity at the Westgate area where Whole Foods/WF 360 is supposed to open (IMHO, that will never happen).

Haven't been there yet but every time I pass the new Fusian restaurant, it is packed. Pizza Fire appears to have no shortage of business either. Can't wait for that area to be completed. And, since it is becoming more likely with every passing day that Sears' days are numbered, hopefully that big ugly box can be knocked down and more new development occurs.

posted by Foodie on Mar 22, 2017 at 03:01:01 pm     #   3 people liked this

I am surprised Sears just doesn't sell that piece of junk for a nice profit. But it is the only Sears in Northwest Ohio now that the Tiffin and FinDully mall stores have closed and when their JCP store closes in a couple months we'll have the only JCP in the area as well. The parking lot at Sears seems dead whenever I drive by there but perhaps they are doing ok being the only store in NWO.

Did anyone on city council bother asking the residents in that area that are impacted what they want or for their input or were they more concerned about what the union bosses (most of whom don't even live in Toledo) who fund their campaigns and endorsements want?

I'm glad to see that Kroger is going to keep a lot of the trees and greenspace and that the nuns are happy. But I wish council would get input from the people in the areas that will be impacted as well. As a downtown resident I'm thrilled Promedica is coming downtown as is every person I talked to that lives downtown. There were a lot of nay sayers complaining that don't even live or work downtown. Downtown residents are the ones that impacted by Promedica the most not people that live an hour away. Same with the Kroger decision, the west Toledo residents are the ones that are dealing with what happens more than anyone else

posted by classylady on Mar 22, 2017 at 04:01:58 pm     #   1 person liked this

I was at Sears last week to get a freezer -- hey, a good deal is a good deal -- but it was like a ghost town inside. I parked on the south side of the store and there were four cars in the lot. Can't speak for the other sides but if inside was any indication, it couldn't have been many.

I've never understood the uproar of city planning for the new location of Kroger. Everything north of that location ob Secor is a hodgepodge mess. Monroe is all retail and ugly as any other retail trail in America. So stopping Kroger do what they want there does what exactly? It would have stopped a $26 million investment in West Toledo, and that's it. Plus, Kroger is an Ohio-based company, and the seventh largest employer in the country. Maybe a big corporation scares some, but they are far from being Walmart. Anyway, I'm glad the project can finally move forward. The Secor corridor is going to look so different, and for the better.

posted by westsidebob on Mar 27, 2017 at 02:08:06 pm     #   2 people liked this

That could actually be a pretty good argument as to exactly why the plan commission was trying to enforce the zoning as it is. As you state, there's a lot of work that can and should be done with the already existing commercially zoned areas. Clear out Sears and Elder Beerman. Renovate the existing Kroger or soon-to-be-vacant Andersons. There are plenty of opportunities with what we already have, no urgency to add more into the mix.

posted by Johio83 on Mar 27, 2017 at 02:16:18 pm     #  

Fallen Timbers has a JCP.

Unfortunately, Sears' days are likely numbered. A recent report said they could be profitable with 200 stores, but they have 1000. When you think of how many are mall anchors across the country, that will mean some major reshuffling in retail.

Toledo would have been crazy to turn down Kroger. The jobs and tax revenue are too important. A national grocer putting a new store within city limits is a big positive. Zoning has its place and should always be considered. Sometimes exceptions should be made. It's also a much delayed win for the sisters.

posted by mixman on Mar 27, 2017 at 03:11:10 pm     #   2 people liked this

Toledo absolutely blew it in their Kroger dealings. Kroger was not going to do anything, but expand the existing location. They have made it their mission to dominate each market. If they didn't stay put, they would have taken sears, westgate, something. Let's not fool ourselves into believing this is extra money and jobs. Those were coming regardless. Now, we just have greater commercial inventory. Not ideal in this market. The only winner in this were the Sisters and Kroger. Toledo screwed themselves, again.

posted by ahmahler on Mar 27, 2017 at 03:16:07 pm     #  

It's always more affordable and much easier for corporations to build new. Not having to deal with old mechanicals, asbestos, lead, someone else's design etc.

Promedica is a great example, they are nearly 10 million over their initial budget on the steam plant and have ran into many issues, with the stacks being the most known.

posted by Xbuckeyex on Mar 27, 2017 at 03:17:08 pm     #   2 people liked this

"They have made it their mission to dominate each market."

We had (or will barely have for a few more weeks) a locally-owned big box retail business that seemed like a good neighbor.

But consumers prefer chains. To satisfy this demand, the chains should be permitted to do whatever they want. It's business.

Uniqueness interferes with sameness. It's easier to shop at familiar stores that can be found nearly everywhere.

To improve our conformity index, we need to eradicate more local character to attract more chains. That's a winnable campaign strategy for local politicians.

posted by jr on Mar 27, 2017 at 04:23:07 pm     #  

I'm all in favor of local character, but large retail stores everywhere are scrambling to deal with the new reality. Shopping used to be a lot of people's first choice for entertainment and socializing. Not anymore.

When I do the shoppertainment thing, it's one-on-one at the farmer's market or at SMALL local stores. Also Goodwill and estate sales are surprisingly satisfying for that urge :)

posted by viola on Mar 27, 2017 at 04:32:20 pm     #  

It's always more affordable and much easier for corporations to build new. Not having to deal with old mechanicals, asbestos, lead, someone else's design etc.

Sprawl creates blight if the population & economic growth can't keep up. It's up to the cities to limit this, so as to keep the demand for space up. Once there are a lack of commercial properties, then rezoning should be considered. Sometimes pro business isn't really pro business. Sometimes it creates a worse future business environment.

posted by ahmahler on Mar 27, 2017 at 05:24:27 pm     #   1 person liked this

The city should of leveraged a small downtown market as part of the deal to approve the zoning change. Might as well get something out of it. Kroger previously stated the Anderson's site was not a possibility for the expanded store.

posted by Hoops on Mar 28, 2017 at 07:35:37 am     #   1 person liked this

The people have to be downtown first. It's no coincidence Kroger wants to open a Marketplace store in West Toledo. You know, where all the people live. And they have good jobs.

posted by westsidebob on Mar 28, 2017 at 08:44:28 am     #  

While I agree I have a pretty good job, I had no idea I lived in west toledo! ;)

posted by upso on Mar 28, 2017 at 10:30:43 am     #   1 person liked this

I don't live in west Toledo. I just own a vacation home there.

posted by justread on Mar 28, 2017 at 10:42:04 am     #   5 people liked this

West Toledo does not have a taproom brewery like Earnest Brew Works. Therefore we have considerable room for improvement.

posted by jr on Mar 28, 2017 at 11:07:34 am     #  

Totally agree Jr.

posted by westsidebob on Mar 28, 2017 at 11:16:23 am     #  

I always thought I had a pretty good job as well, but apparently not since I live downtown and not in West Toledo:)

Surprised to hear no one is living downtown seeing there is a waiting list for apartments going for over $1,000 a month downtown and condos are getting accepted offers for list price within a week of being listed for sale:)

posted by classylady on Mar 28, 2017 at 11:47:21 am     #  

It takes a lot more than that to get a grocery store. I hope you do. But if a city the size of Vancouver, Canada, is just now getting a downtown grocery store, our downtown might be waiting a while.

posted by westsidebob on Mar 28, 2017 at 01:29:01 pm     #  

westsidebob posted at 01:29:01 PM on Mar 28, 2017:

It takes a lot more than that to get a grocery store. I hope you do. But if a city the size of Vancouver, Canada, is just now getting a downtown grocery store, our downtown might be waiting a while.

Not as long as it would have to wait for Vancouver and Toledo to be equivalent.

posted by justread on Mar 28, 2017 at 01:47:02 pm     #  

Most downtown residents don't even care about a full size supermarket and would be satisfied with something like a Walmart neighborhood market like they have in some big city neighborhoods. I'd be happy with something like the Promedica Market on Madison downtown as well as a Pharmacy.

Toledo used to have three Lane drug stores downtown and I know at least two had Pharmacies and we had Shales for a while and the supermarket that went into that spot after in the LaSalle building. We have a lot more people living downtown now and I think a pharmacy and small grocery would do well now. Not only do we have more residents downtown it's a higher income demographic than ever living downtown.

posted by classylady on Mar 28, 2017 at 02:43:48 pm     #  

So....

2010 blog post featuring TWELVE grocery stores in downtown vancouver...

http://bcrobyn.blogspot.com/2010/01/grocery-stores-in-downtown-vancouver.html

Also, to point it out again - we have 2 grocery stores in the downtown area.

Market on the Green - a decent small grocer akin to the small ones you'd find in Manhattan with a fairly limited but decent selection.

San Marcos - obviously super mexican-focused, but awesome for that exact reason too. great meat prices, good produce quality, and some interesting ingredients you can't get anywhere else in the area that I've seen.

Yeah I know, San Marcos is more warehouse-district / south side and Market is kinda Uptown.... but still. They're pretty close.

If we ARE going to get a true downtown grocer, like in the center of it somewhere, I would bet it can't happen before the downtown AWTrail exit rebuild is done. It's gonna be a big traffic disruption, and by the time it's done you'll have more occupancy anyway.

posted by endcycle on Mar 28, 2017 at 02:52:23 pm     #  

Justread - I just read a story about it today is all. All I'm saying is if big cities are having trouble getting a downtown grocery, what's that say about the mid-sized ones?

My bad for not posting link with earlier post, and apparently Vancouver, USA :) : https://www.vbjusa.com/news/top-stories/gramor-development-ready-bring-grocery-store-downtown-vancouver/

And don't forget Seaway on Cherry Street.

posted by westsidebob on Mar 28, 2017 at 03:01:11 pm     #  

Yeah I know, San Marcos is more warehouse-district / south side and Market is kinda Uptown.... but still. They're pretty close.

Just for clarity's sake, "downtown" is made up of the Central Business District, the Warehouse District, and UpTown.

posted by Johio83 on Mar 28, 2017 at 03:04:22 pm     #  

10-plus years ago, a small or tiny grocery store existed on West St. Clair Street in the Warehouse district. It was called "The Market on St. Clair."

Groceries & Provisions - Fresh Produce - Wine & Beer - Fresh Breads

posted by jr on Mar 28, 2017 at 03:09:07 pm     #  

Having lived downtown about 12 years I had stopped in their a few times. But I find the "downtown need a grocery store" argument to be laughable. Few if any people who live downtown care. There are multiple places within a 5 to 10 minute drive. Downtown residences would rather walk to the bar than to Kroger. And all the people who day they want one wouldn't go since they would have to carry their groceries a block to their car.

posted by In_vin_veritas on Mar 28, 2017 at 03:24:09 pm     #  

I shop at San Marcos grocery market on a regular basis and I live in Point Place. I don't think I'd have a problem being happy with them as my "main" market if I were a downtown dweller.

They have a bit of everything including cleaning and other household supplies - and their prices are not out of line. On many items such as spices, they are dirt cheap.

One could greatly expand their culinary repertoire shopping there.

posted by Foodie on Mar 28, 2017 at 03:31:06 pm     #  

I'd love another market like the one that used to be on St. Clair. Problem was we didn't have the population and demographic living downtown when it opened that we do now.

I like San Marco but there were several times I walked over for items they didn't have in the past month. One was cool whip and they didn't carry it and another was for a carton of OJ and they only had the small 16 oz. bottles. They have some unique items though that you can't find at Kroger such as their frozen fruit bars and some of the bakery items are tasty.

posted by classylady on Mar 28, 2017 at 04:59:17 pm     #  

They also have an interesting variety of frozen items. When was the last time you bought a package of frozen Pigeon Peas?

Me neither.

posted by Foodie on Mar 28, 2017 at 05:10:46 pm     #   1 person liked this

So...does Sautters in Sylvania count as being in downtown Sylvania? I hope so, because I really want Sylvania to be hip and cool with a cool downtown with groceries and stuff.

Crossing my fingers because my hipster beard should be coming in nicely any month now.

posted by JoeyGee on Mar 28, 2017 at 06:14:55 pm     #  

"... my hipster beard should be coming in nicely any month now."

I could have crocheted you a beard.

posted by jr on Mar 28, 2017 at 06:32:44 pm     #   2 people liked this

JoeyGee posted at 06:14:55 PM on Mar 28, 2017:

So...does Sautters in Sylvania count as being in downtown Sylvania? I hope so, because I really want Sylvania to be hip and cool with a cool downtown with groceries and stuff.

Crossing my fingers because my hipster beard should be coming in nicely any month now.

Downtown Sylviana will only be hipsters approved when the post about Treo closing surpasses 3500 comments....

posted by In_vin_veritas on Mar 28, 2017 at 08:52:10 pm     #   5 people liked this

I agree with the San Marco's frozen bars that they have at the cash register. Cookies and Cream or watermelon are my favorite flavors.

Their prices are reasonable and I'll go there if I only need one or two items and it's something they carry. They don't carry a lot of the items I buy on my regular shopping trip to Kroger. One thing I find tacky about San Marco's is the tip jar at the cash register.

posted by jamesteroh on Mar 28, 2017 at 10:50:06 pm     #  

I agree with the San Marco's frozen bars that they have at the cash register. Cookies and Cream or watermelon are my favorite flavors.

Their prices are reasonable and I'll go there if I only need one or two items and it's something they carry. They don't carry a lot of the items I buy on my regular shopping trip to Kroger. One thing I find tacky about San Marco's is the tip jar at the cash register.

posted by jamesteroh on Mar 28, 2017 at 10:50:07 pm     #  

April Fools day is the absolute worst. Anyone that enjoys it also likes jack in the boxes and cold showers.

posted by ahmahler on Apr 01, 2017 at 06:11:07 pm     #   1 person liked this

I disagree. This commercial for the Lane Valet is awesome:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Tzqio8ig6Gk

posted by viola on Apr 02, 2017 at 10:10:36 am     #  

viola posted at 10:10:36 AM on Apr 02, 2017:

I disagree. This commercial for the Lane Valet is awesome:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Tzqio8ig6Gk

It is indeed. Though there are times when I'd rather have forward mounted 50mm gatling guns.

posted by Foodie on Apr 02, 2017 at 03:35:10 pm     #   1 person liked this

http://www.toledoblade.com/Politics/2017/04/14/Plan-commissioner-now-works-for-Toledo.html

As predicted by many. And I can tell you it's even worse than it looks.

posted by Xbuckeyex on Apr 14, 2017 at 08:52:46 am     #  

It looks really really bad.

posted by upso on Apr 14, 2017 at 09:55:39 am     #  

People are surprised by this?

Business/politics as usual in Toledo/Lucas County.

posted by Foodie on Apr 14, 2017 at 10:22:02 am     #  

Not surprised, just disappointed, as usual.

posted by upso on Apr 14, 2017 at 10:32:21 am     #  

This shows the boldness of Toledo government. They don't try to hide these shenanigans because they know that their actions will go unchallenged.

It's great that Ignazio Messina does this kind of reporting. He's probably the only Toledo media person who can do this reporting. But city government does not fear Messina.

Nothing will change because special interests support the "leaders", and voter apathy is too extreme.

City government relies on a disengaged electorate. City government wants the citizens distracted by non-local stories.

And if someone or something criticizes the status quo, then the status quo responds by labeling the critics negative nellies.

The September 2013 primary spotlights the lack of interest by Toledo voters. Seven candidates ran for mayor, including popular names like Bell, Collins, McNamara, and Lopez. 17 people ran for the six city council at-large seats.

Yet voter turnout was only around 15 percent for the September 2013 Toledo primary. And voter turnout was only 25 percent for Toledo's November 2013 general election.

If Toledoans were truly tired of the status quo, then a higher voter turnout might create dramatic changes, or at least put the entrenched officials on alert.

I believe that one of Toledo government's greatest fears is an informed citizenry.

In recent years, it appears that a "local" movement has occurred in Toledo, such as supporting local craftspeople, artists, farmers, and other small businesses.

But the interest in what happens with local government has decreased over the past 15 years. The interest in Toledo government has decreased at a greater rate than the decrease in Toledo's population.

In other words, unless something dramatic changes in 2017, the lack of concern will worsen into the next decade.

It's hard to believe that voter turnout at Toledo's September 2017 primary could be 12 to 13 percent. By 2021, it won't be worth the time and money to hold a primary. Simply put all candidates on the November ballot.

It's possible that most of the people who are concerned about Toledo government's actions will live outside Toledo.

If anything can stall, hinder, or reverse the positives that have occurred in Toledo, it will be city government. Ignoring the actions of city government can have long-term negative effects.

posted by jr on Apr 14, 2017 at 11:33:01 am     #   3 people liked this

Messina's boss, the publisher, lives in Pittsburgh. The only thing he cares about in Toledo is dogs.

posted by westsidebob on Apr 14, 2017 at 03:41:22 pm     #   1 person liked this

Don't undertand how people can whoop it up on the 4th of July and Veteran' Day and then fail in their obligation to make use of their voting franchise. Those free, open, honest elections were secured with human lives. If they were taken away tomorrow would it be noticed and would people feel the loss. If they have not participated then no, it would not matter until all liberties have vanished.

posted by Mariner on Apr 14, 2017 at 05:21:14 pm     #   2 people liked this

Apr 17, 2017 Toledo Blade editorial about Toledo government's leadership:

This is shameless corruption.

And the shamelessness is either because the shameless don’t know any better and self-dealing is the only politics they understand or because they just don’t care about what is right or what the people think.

Former plan commission member Singh Grewal, who supported Kroger’s request to rezone land at Monroe Street and Secor Road for a new, larger store, has been hired as an “economic development consultant” for the city. He’ll be paid $45 an hour.

His 221.6-hour [???] contract with the city will pay him $9,972, which coincidentally is just shy of the $10,000 threshold at which Mayor Paula Hicks-Hudson would have to get city council approval to hire him rather than just do it herself.

And that's who the Lucas County democrat party endorsed for mayor of Toledo: a person who governs with shameless corruption.

More from the editorial:

You’d think that after brazenly caving to a combination of pressure groups — unions, Catholics loyal to the leadership of the Notre Dame sisters, and big business, plus the promise of campaign help from all of the above — to approve a development deal that violates the city’s master plan, Toledo City Council and the Hicks-Hudson administration would lay low for a while. But you’d be wrong.

The above op-ed said:

... contract with the city will pay him ...

"Contract" and "will pay" sound like something that will occur in the future.

The confusing part about the Apr 14, 2017 Blade story is what's the definition of "invoice"?

An invoice to the city from Mr. Grewal’s firm, Innovative Community Services — listed at 3250 W. Bancroft St., a residential property near Secor — was dated March 9.

That was 22 days before Mr. Grewal officially resigned his plan commission seat March 31.

The city charter states anyone who receives funds from the city, either directly or indirectly, cannot serve on boards or commissions.

The invoice charged city taxpayers $45 an hour for 221.6 hours, for a total $9,972.

"Invoice" and "charged" sound like something that occurred in the past.

More from the Apr 14 Blade story:

The description of work listed on the invoice was: “providing business solutions for financially suffering businesses. Implementing sign code.”

The document says “invoice” below the date and also “due on receipt” under a column titled “payment terms.”

And here's the explanation from the shamelessly corrupt city government:

City spokesman Janet Schroeder said Mr. Grewal was not working for the city until April 1.

She said the document from his firm was not an invoice and was instead projecting an “up-to amount” the city would pay him.

The city of Toledo hired a $45-per-hour consultant who may not know the definition of "invoice".

Apparently, the only piece of paper that the consultant or the city could find was a document labeled "invoice."

Where's the attention to detail? Does the city value accuracy?

The consultant's alleged contract projects a max of 221.6 hours of work, which will earn him $9,972, which is below the $10,000 threshold that requires city council approval.

A contract labeled invoice seems to indicate that the $9,972 has already been spent for work that has not occurred. Maybe this is done for budgetary reasons.

Corruption.

But Toledo's mayor humorously claimed:

Mayor Paula Hicks-Hudson said Mr. Grewal’s hiring had nothing to do with the Kroger vote.

More about Mr. Grewal's hiring:

Calvin Lawshe, the city’s economic development director, said Mr. Grewal is highly qualified.

Mayor Paula Hicks-Hudson said Mr. Grewa was recommended for the job because of his experience. She called the position a critical one within the city to help businesses navigate their development.

Tom Waniewski said he always found Mr. Grewal to be a “level-headed guy” on the plan commission. “He’s a hard-working entrepreneur, and I think that’s what you need in economic development,” he said.

An experienced, highly qualified, hard-working, level-headed entrepreneur will provide critical services to Toledo government that will help businesses. That sounds spectacular.

But if the role is that important, and if the consultant is that qualified, then it seems odd to limit the consultant's invoice/contract to a max of 221.6 hours of work.

From the Blade editorial:

The words that come to mind are: blatant, sleazy, and shameless.

I'm surprised that the invoice/contract document was not titled "quid pro quo".

posted by jr on Apr 18, 2017 at 09:24:21 am     #   8 people liked this

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