The downtown community has been clamoring for more grocery stores for obvious reasons. It’s difficult to live somewhere comfortably without having convenient access to a lot of grocery options. We all love our Ralphs Fresh Fare, Woori Market, and even City Target, but in the case of grocery options, the more the merrier. Competition creates an advantage for consumers who are able to price and quality shop. So it is very exciting to me that another truly full-scale grocery store will be opening in a few months that will help make downtown an even more attractive place to live. Smart & Final Extra will be opening a brand new 25,000 square foot market in the Financial District/South Park, not far from many residents and office workers in the area.
According to a construction supervisor who was on-site at the 845 S Figueroa location (also the future Los Angeles headquarters for the State Bar of California), the market is on schedule to open by the “first week” of July 2013 (basically, in about two months). Construction was still humming along and crews were wrapping up on the parking lot that will be landscaped with potted plants. Within the next couple of weeks, the construction equipment will be removed and Smart & Final will be able to complete store build-out and stock shelves with inventory before opening.
Smart & Final Extra obviously doesn’t have the hype of Trader Joe’s or Whole Foods, but for the interim until those two brands come downtown (and Whole Foods may be here a lot sooner than you think!), I consider S&F a solid addition to the downtown community. Most people associate S&F with “bulk items” (sorta like a mini Costco), but when I checked out their “Extra concept” in Montebello, I realized it was pretty much just like a regular grocery store with fresh produce and packaged meats along with some bulk items that I think perhaps some downtowners might even like, especially since there will also be a parking lot (albeit a bit suburban-ish) for those who choose to drive and load larger grocery purchases. Ultimately, I think having more grocery options in Downtown LA will benefit us all and make it even more attractive to live here.
For more info, check out Smart & Final online.