Seniors feel abandoned as Cloverdale grocery store closes its doors

As the MarketPlace IGA prepares for its final day of operations, there's still no word on what will replace it.

The MarketPlace IGA in Cloverdale is closing its doors Feb. 27 after 19 years in operation at Clover Square Village.

The Marketplace IGA in Clover Square Village is shutting its doors Friday, but there’s no official word on what anchor store might replace it – or when it would open.

That’s left downtown Cloverdale residents like John Masters – a local senior who doesn’t drive – asking hard questions about where they’ll shop for groceries come Feb. 28.

Masters, who lives in a seniors complex at 176A Street and 60 Avenue, says it’s simply too far to walk to the nearest full-service grocery store – the  Save-On-Foods at Cloverdale Crossing, 17745 64 Avenue, on the other side of the Cloverdale Fairgrounds from his home.

“I can’t afford a taxi,” he said, adding he’s aware of other residents who don’t drive and relied on MarketPlace IGA, including people who use walkers.

“We were wondering how we will get our food,” said Masters, who contacted The Reporter Tuesday, hoping to learn if a new grocery store will be moving in.

Along historic 176 Street, rumours abound – suggestions include Your Independent Grocer, an Ontario-based supermarket chain with stores in Langley, Coquitlam, Vancouver and Abbotsford – but official channels remain silent.

Last month a representative of H.Y. Louie Co., which in B.C. supplies IGA stores, which are independently owned, directed The Reporter to the Cloverdale store manager and franchisee Ron Day. He was not able to disclose the name of the new tenant.

The mall, at 17700 56 Avenue, is owned by Clover Square Holdings, a holding company of Standard Life Insurance.

Barry Holmes, a property manager with Colliers International, was able to reveal in January that a new tenant has been lined up, but he wasn’t able to say more than that.

Contacted this week, he said he was still not at liberty to reveal the name of the new tenant, and could provide no timeline for when that might change.

The MarketPlace IGA has served Cloverdale residents for 19 years. About 35 employees are affected by the closure.

Downtown Cloverdale lost a corner supermarket, Cloverdale Market at 58 Avenue and 176 Street, a couple of years ago. Long time residents also recall the loss of Safeway from the former Cloverdale Shopping Plaza mall.

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