Full-service grocery store to open in Maywood

April 19, 2010 (MAYWOOD, Ill.)

The Maywood Market at 5th Avenue and Washington will officially open on April 21.

A number of developers have tried to open a grocery store in last two decades, but none has ever been able to close the deal -- until now.

With the clock ticking till customers start shopping at the store, employees are busy stacking the shelves. Maywood Market is not one of the huge grocery store brand names in the Chicago area, but the store will carry most of the same products, and they expect to have the market cornered in town since it will be the only grocery store in the suburb.

"It's not so convenient for the people of Maywood to go outside to different villages and spend money there. They need their own," said owner Bob Haralambopoulos.

Town officials have been trying to lure a grocery store for years as they watched sales and property tax revenue leave town as residents bought groceries in neighboring communities. It took a substantial investment from the village to make it happen, but they say they expect it will pay off.

"There's no doubt in my mind that this developer right here will certainly enhance the area, first of all, and then it's going to encourage or attract others," said Henderson Yarbrough, village president.

"You look at the lack of fresh fruits, fresh vegetables within the community itself, this is something more than just a financial decision, this is more of a decision of the effect of the community," said Jason Erving, village manager.

The village invested millions of dollars improving infrastructure along 5th Avenue. Now they expect the grocery store to be an anchor that will help attract other businesses.

Residents say they're excited to have somewhere close by to get fresh meat and produce.

"My grandma...she's going to be there all the time. She stays down the street," said Michael Johnson, Maywood resident.

A private opening reception took place Monday evening at the store.

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