Stong’s Market plans to stay in Dunbar — and expand its business, according to an update from company president Cori Bonina.
The update was in response to neighbourhood residents’ questions after two recent houses for development projects along Dunbar Street.
Henriquez Partners Architects unveiled its revised proposal for properties located from 4508 to 4560 on Dunbar Street and 3581 West 30th Avenue at a July 31 open house. Stong’s leases space at 4560 Dunbar St. on that site.
Meanwhile, a company called Dunbar Partnership, owned by Dunbar residents, acquired properties nearby at 4219-4295 Dunbar St. and hosted a meeting July 29 to seek input on its development plans. A neighbourhood group called Dunbar ReVision, which was formed to influence the City of Vancouver’s planning process, summarized reaction from both meetings on its blog where Bonina also posted a message to Stong’s customers to clarify its future.
Bonina did not return a call from the Courier, but her update indicated that the company signed a long-term lease with Dunbar Partnership to open a new grocery store in the 4200 block of Dunbar Street “that will offer our customers more choice and selection than ever before,” subject to the approval of that development project.
“As for the current Stong’s site, we are committed to staying at this location as part of the redeveloped site, with additional offerings that may include a restaurant and expanded health and wellness services. We love being part of the Dunbar community and want to assure you that, while we’re growing and changing, after 80 years…we aren’t going anywhere. Thank you for your ongoing support,” stated the message, which was signed by Bonina and Ken Nilsson.
Citizens’ Assembly news
Names and biographies of Grandview-Woodland Citizens’ Assembly members are expected to be released Aug. 12.
The 48 volunteer participants were selected through an Aug. 6 blind draw, which ensured representation from an equal number of men and women, a proportionate number from six neighbourhood zones, a proportionate number from each of four age groups, and a proportionate number of people who rent their home, own their home or live in a co-op.
Rachel Magnusson, director of MASS West — the company running the assembly and the assembly’s chair, said there were 504 eligible applications.
“As of right now it looks like we have seven people who have self-identified as aboriginal on the citizens’ assembly, 10 people who are 16 to 29, people from different areas of the neighbourhood — so it was easy for us to meet all of our demographic criteria,” she said.
The group meets for its first session Sept. 20. Meantime, Magnusson’s team is meeting with its advisory board, working on agendas for the meetings and thinking about who might speak to some of the different issues that will be discussed. “Making sure we get a broad range of perspectives,” she said.