INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — For years East 38th Street near Meadows Drive has been labeled as a food desert. The community has pushed for fresh fruit, vegetables, and produce. Over the years, residents would have to drive more than a mile to get toe a grocery store leaving their neighborhood.
“If you don’t have a car, you have to go to the gas station pay three times what it is worth,” said Sayyid Collins, a resident.
The food desert is no more in the area. Starting on Thursday, Save-A-Lot will open a 16,000 square foot grocery store. The grocery store is a $9 million investment, and more than $70 million of private investment has been put in the Avondale Meadows area.
A mixture of 36 full-time and part-time jobs will be offered at the Save-A-Lot. 24-Hour News 8 is learning that 35 of the 36 positions were filled by people who live in the Avondale Meadows area.
On Wednesday, Mayor Joe Hogsett and other city leaders are expected to celebrate with Save-A-Lot representatives on Wednesday, during a private ceremony.
Hours before the celebration, new customers tried to walk into the store to make purchases, but the store’s cash registers will not turn on until 8 a.m. Thursday.
In addition to the celebration Save-A-Lot will contribute $2,500 in gift cards to the neighborhood Church of Living God Food Pantry.
Save-A-Lot bills itself as one of the nation’s leading hard-discount, carefully selected assortment grocery chains in the country, operating more than 1,400 stores in 35 states.
“I think it is going to be a good thing for the community especially in an emergency now you don’t have to travel four or five miles to get supplies for your family,” said Collins.