It's happening slowly and around the edges, but it's happening--Downtown is finally getting its grocery stores. Following the controversial announcement that a Walmart Neighborhood Market is moving into Chinatown (and amidst the ongoing renovation to add a Target with food options at FIGat7th), the Downtown News reports today that Smart & Final is hitting Downtown proper and planning to move into a space on Figueroa between Eight and Ninth Streets in South Park. The company has signed a 20 year deal for 25,000 square feet and will open a Smart & Final Extra, "a larger version of its traditional store that includes fresh foods." The store will sell "fresh meat, produce, dairy and deli items, in addition to low-cost packaged edibles, bulk food service provisions and janitorial supplies," and have a deli and patio (on the Fig side). The office building at 845 S. Fig has already been getting a big, "creative office"-focused renovation. Construction on the grocery store is set to start at the end of 2012, with an opening planned for the first few months of 2013. Alas, the ever-elusive Trader Joe's and Whole Foods remain at large.
· Smart & Final to Open Downtown Grocery Store [Downtown News]