New Price Chopper eyed for Clifton Park
Bigger store would anchor mixed-use development on Route 146
CLIFTON PARK A new Price Chopper supermarket could anchor a mixed-use development project proposed near the corner of routes 146 and 146A in Clifton Park.
At 60,000 square feet, the new store would be twice as big and replace an existing Price Chopper that sits kitty-corner to the proposed site, said company spokeswoman Mona Golub. The new store would serve as the anchor for a larger development that includes 25,000 square feet of adjacent retail space and three nearby buildings that the developer for the project hopes to fill with restaurants.
“The area around our current, conventional-sized store has grown, and frankly, so have the variety of products and services that we offer,” said Golub. “We’re proposing a store that would reflect our forward thinking and have elements of our next generation of stores in terms of design and breadth of offerings and customer convenience.”
The existing Price Chopper at that intersection was originally a Grand Union. At 30,000 square feet, it is smaller in size and has fewer in-store services than many other Price Chopper stores. A new store could feature some of the new Price Chopper amenities seen at the Schenectady-based supermarket chain’s new “Market Bistro” concept store in Latham. That store features 16 fast-casual restaurants, 140 indoor seats, 40 to 50 outdoor seats, a cooking school, smokehouse, Starbucks, organic bazaar and drive-through pharmacy, to name a few.
“Certain elements that you will see in Market Bistro will be played out in other new stores that we intend to build, and this new store could be one of them,” said Golub, cautioning that it’s too soon to say for certain since an application was only just submitted.
Town Supervisor Phil Barrett said he received the application Tuesday afternoon from Albany developer Nigro Cos. The application is for a planned unit development on a plot of land just north of Route 146, west of Route 146A and east of Sterling Heights Drive. The parcel contains a significant chunk of wetlands. The Price Chopper would be built behind them, with the closest access road on the Route 146A side of the development and another access point off of Route 146 that would first take drivers by the three proposed outbuildings.
The application calls for the removal of a slip lane that lets drivers coming from Route 146A turn onto Route 146 without actually entering the intersection. A normal right-turn lane would be added in its place.
“Within the next few weeks, we will refer the application to the Planning Board, and they will give us their initial recommendation within 60 days,” said Barrett. “When it comes back to the Town Board, we would hold a public hearing and a make a decision from there. A lot of this depends on the recommendation from the Planning Board, so we just have to wait and see.”
Price Chopper has another store in Clifton Park, further east on Route 146 in the town’s Shopper’s World development right before Northway Exit 9. That store has been slated for several renovations, Golub said, but she declined to detail them. The chain wants the store at Exit 9 to be more in line with residential growth happening on the other side of town, she said.
While the new store at routes 146 and 146A would be much larger than the existing one, it wouldn’t be as large as Price Chopper’s largest stores. The Market Bistro, for example, will measure 80,000 square feet when it’s complete.
“We’d like to build a beautiful new store and give our customers a complete shopping experience,” Golub said. “The idea is to right-size the store for the community in which you’re building it. We have a variety of sizes for our stores when we build from the ground up.”
Nigro Cos. has experience developing, building and managing commercial developments anchored around supermarkets. It’s responsible for Hannaford plazas in Rotterdam, Saratoga Springs and Albany, a Price Rite plaza in Queensbury and multiple Price Chopper plazas, including in Malta, Troy, Binghamton, Watertown, Ogdensburg and Shrewsbury, Mass.
Company Vice President Steve Powers said the proposed development will resemble a neighborhood shopping center.
“It will have several different retail options,” he said. “We’re in discussion with several possible tenants now, but until we know the time frame a little better, we can’t be sure of anything yet.”
If the new development wins approval, Nigro Cos. would also market the existing Price Chopper space to new tenants so that the space doesn’t sit vacant.