Walgreens may be coming to 21st and 21st, displacing local businesses
The intersection of 21st East and 21st South is another of Salt Lake City’s unique grid based neighborhood business districts that often reinforce the character of the area. 21st and 21st as it is sometimes referred is no exception with mostly local businesses anchoring the area like the Blue Plate Diner and 21st & 21st Framing.
Plans are possibly in the works to demolish the above two businesses buildings to make room for another Sugar House Walgreen’s location, and though plans have not been seen yet we expect if built it will have a drive-through pharmacy window as well. The design will likely be another with the building set back with parking out front rather than the preferred alternative of a street side building with parking in the back.
When asked about the possible change and of their plans to stay in the area, Joe Mandl the General Manager of Blue Plate Diner said “We had heard that Walgreen’s won’t be moving forward with their plans, I could be wrong but if they do we absolutely hope to stay in the area”.
Nearby neighborhoods 15th and 15th along with 9th and 9th have seen attempts in recent years by chain stores to come in and those that have most have been unwelcome additions by a majority of neighborhood residents. Starbucks closed its location over a year ago in 9th and 9th business district and a local business Dolcetti Gelato quickly filled its spot.
Big box retailers have been eager to open their stores in Salt Lake City proper for years. Our zoning laws and neighborhoods that were already built out left little if any room for these strip mall or corner hogs. Walmart is currently still active in its plans to build at the old K-Mart location on Parleys Way. Salt Lake City re-zoned an area along 300 West in Salt Lake City a few years back that big-box and mega retailers have been flocking to build including Walmart and a new Target that just opened last fall.
Russell Bishop a directory writer for 21st and 21st a neighborhood and community website (www.21stand21st.com) stated “Utah’s inner Salt Lake City neighborhoods and eclectic business districts are a unique asset to our city. Anytime we lose local businesses to be replaced by chain or mega stores our economy and our neighborhood character is permanently changed”. He went on to say “Buying from local merchants empowers our local community with jobs, taxes and money that more often than not is re-invested back into our community. Money spent at large retail mega-stores usually goes elsewhere”.