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Update: Albertsons to Close By End of June

The store has been open more than 20 years, but will close due to poor revenue, an Albertsons representative said.

Story updated at 1:10 p.m. to include a quote from Albertsons representative Lilia Rodriguez about whether or not the store closure has anything to do with a Walmart scheduled to open in the area in the fall.

The Albertsons in the 1800 block of Coronado Avenue, which opened in 1991, will close by the end of June, a company representative said.

"We have a responsibility to assure the success of all of our stores, and that was one store that was just not meeting its goals, especially in a competitive and difficult economic environment," said Lilia Rodriguez, Albertson's communication manager.

The store includes fresh produce, a bakery and fresh meat.

Employees were notified April 27, she said.

Albertsons declined to disclose how many employees work at the Coronado Avenue supermarket but said employees may be relocated to other locations across San Diego.

The closure will reduce the amount of stores in IB and west of Interstate 5 that sell fresh produce daily from four to three.

Currently, only Wallys on Palm Avenue and La Posta Market on Imperial Beach Boulevard serve fresh produce in IB.

The Imperial Beach Certified Farmers Market also sells fresh produce every Friday from 2-7:30 p.m.

"We don't focus on competition. We focus on what we have to do for our business," said Rodriguez when asked if the closure has anything to do with a Walmart expected to open in the area in the fall.

What happens next with the property is still unclear.

According to the San Diego County Assessors Office, 1860 Coronado Avenue is owned by American Food and Drugs Inc. 

A representative from SUPERVALU, Albertsons' parent company, said American Food and Drug Inc. was purchased by Albertsons in 1998.

However, Rodriguez and a spokesperson for SUPERVALU maintain that the property is leased, and have declined to state who they lease the property from.

Christine Howell has lived blocks from the Albertsons for about 20 years.

Though she technically lives in San Diego, she considers herself part of both the Nestor and Imperial Beach communities.

She typically shops at the Vons off Saturn Boulevard and the commissary at NOLF IB, but occassionally picked up a few groceries from the Albertsons.

"They have good chicken there and fruit bowls," she said laughing.

She's concerned that the store will no longer be there to serve people who don't have a lot of money to shop elsewhere.

"It's on a bus line, and I know that's kind of important to people who don't have transportation," she said.

She is also sad to see the store close since, that's where she used to buy monthly bus passes called Compass Cards for her son.

"Now we don't have anywhere to pick it up, and we'll have to go to Third Street in Chula Vista to get that," she said.

Good Bye Albertsons May 19, 2012 at 12:54 AM
Well, first of all, Albertson's isn't in Imperial Beach, and never has been. They don't have scooter carts, so I haven't been able to shop there in about 10 years. They used to have good sales, but they havevery narrow aisles, making it difficult for even able-bodied customers to shop.
Marcus Boyd May 19, 2012 at 01:35 AM
Maybe the closure is less to due with 'poor revenue' and more to due with poor management... So, from this article it sounds like SUPERVALU may have forgotten that they own the building and have been paying rent to themselves for the past 14 years. I shop at Albertsons often and I have not noticed a lack of business, or profit for that matter. There are always three lanes open with three or more shoppers in each. I have noticed a lack of quality and repairs though. On a day when Hewlett Packard announced 30,000 layoffs for next week, I wish the best of luck to all the friendly employees and their families.
Janis Tena May 19, 2012 at 01:53 PM
Friendly yes I agree. It's the grocery store where everyone knows your name. I always got a nice smile and hello from the employees every time I went in. Yes it certainly has needed repairs but I over looked that. The prices always seemed good, I don't need to pay for a pretty store unless there prices are good. Those friendly employees will be missed. I wish them all luck
David Moore May 19, 2012 at 02:14 PM
It is not about the lack of customers or that WalMart will be opening in the fall. It could have something to do with the cost of updating the store it is an older building, lacks the space to expand as other albertson stores have, the isles are to close to each other, Albertson is not in Imperial Beach nor will WalMart be in Imperial Beach. Vons also sells fresh produce. There is not a bus stop close to WalMart or Vons, it is located on the corner of Palm Ave and Saturn Blvd by a gas station but Vons is always busy and they have motorized carts for customers but need to get a few more.
Daniel J. Lopez May 19, 2012 at 02:44 PM
Put in a "Save-U-Foods or Save-Alot" !!!
Mary Vollrath May 19, 2012 at 02:51 PM
That grocery store was too small from the day it opened.
Mary Vollrath May 19, 2012 at 02:51 PM
That grocery store was too small from the day it opened.
moskimo May 19, 2012 at 03:43 PM
I went once and never went back...the produce section was horrible.
christine howell May 19, 2012 at 03:52 PM
I would love to see a Sprouts!
Aaron May 19, 2012 at 04:14 PM
Saying the store has been around "more than 20 years" is certainly conservative. The store originally opened as an Alpha-Beta in the 70s and then became Lucky and then Albertsons. I am disappointed that the store is leaving, but it was definitely written on the wall since SVU had never remodeled the store when all other Albertsons stores have been remodeled by now.
LT May 19, 2012 at 04:53 PM
sux to see another local business going down but i can't say i'm too surprised. the albertson's was always a bit small and outdated, not to mention that the produce dept was kinda crappy and overall the selection and prices were typically worse than vons. if albertson's was gonna save this store from going toe up it needed to do something years ago. i sure hope san diego has a plan for expanding palm ave near saturn, cuz with the extra traffic going to vons and walmart this summer that intersection and shopping center is gonna even more of a mess then it already is.
Paula Hall May 19, 2012 at 06:54 PM
I agree with Aaron's history of the store. the center seems to have been badly maintained. Sidewalks are horribly dirty. It may have been really affected by closing of Marion High School. We need optuolion for healthier food like Sprouts for sure. It would be nice to see our area here turn into a more village/ artistic community like what they've done in areas like North Park. If park would hold music & art fests, etc. We have such a wealth of talented people here, our schools have been developing centers for gifted kids. Why don't we treasure that and continue s they grow into adulthood by having a community pthat gives them a venue to share, to perform, to live & flourish? Lets do it!
Paula Hall May 19, 2012 at 06:56 PM
I agree with Aaron's history of the store. the center seems to have been badly maintained. Sidewalks are horribly dirty. It may have been really affected by closing of Marion High School. We need options for healthier food like Sprouts for sure. It would be nice to see our area here turn into a more village/ artistic community like what they've done in areas like North Park. If park would hold music & art fests, etc. We have such a wealth of talented people here, our schools have been developing centers for gifted kids. Why don't we treasure that and continue as they grow into adulthood by having a community that gives them a venue to share, to perform, to live & flourish? Lets do it!
Mitchell D. McKay May 20, 2012 at 10:28 PM
Yes, the store originally open as an Alpha Beta in the early 1970s...I worked there, first as a bagger in 1976 and later as a "night stocker" in the late 1970s. The personnel at the current Albertson's are always friendly and service-oriented the times I shop there...in fact, the Assistant Manager "Cookie" is the bomb! Losing this store will surely limit the grocery shopping options for those of us who call Imperial Beach home...by the way, at one time Imperial Beach extended all the way East to Saturn Blvd (formerly known as "19th Street")
Dave Fenner May 23, 2012 at 06:20 PM
To my knowledge, IB never extended to Saturn Blvd, except by mail zip code, - the city limits have always been where they are. BTW, the corner opposite Emory school, where Jack in the Box is now, was just a low spot, and in the winter formed a pond or swamp, with one or two large trees near it. When they built the shopping center, it was filled and leveled, clear back to Alpha Beta store. Therer used to be large Eucalyptus trees all the way down Saturn (19th st) from Coronado Ave, to Palm ave, similar to the ones that still exit near Hermes and Saturn. In my mind, a good replacement store would be Trader Joes.
Paula Winchester May 24, 2012 at 06:11 PM
The problem with the store is that in the 20 years since it opened it was never updated, at least not that the customers could tell. I think albertsons kind of dropped the ball a long time ago and let the store run into the ground. Every time I was in there the place was packed, so it wasn't for the lack of customers. It was way too cramped and old feeling. We do need another store here though, especially when Walmart goes in and you won't be able to find parking in that shopping center. It is already a pain to get to because of traffic. Trader joes needs to go in the center across from Wally's. It would draw the Coronado crowd and be a big boost for the city.
ibbarbara May 24, 2012 at 11:06 PM
I agree with Mitchell D. McKay.....Cookie is "the bomb"!!!!!!! She will be missed!! A Trader Joe's would be awesome, but I heard some apt's & a strip mall were going to be built :(
Benji n' Pepe's Mom July 24, 2012 at 03:34 PM
Trader Joes or sprouts!
Ace Vidal July 26, 2012 at 12:53 AM
Best a Food For Less or Seafood City
Ace Vidal July 26, 2012 at 12:56 AM
Closed Albertsons is in Imperial Beach, Same as the New Walmart will be open in September 2012 in Imperial Beach
Mark Allen Leonesio July 31, 2012 at 07:02 PM
There was a lot of information missing in the story. Good Call
Khari Johnson (Editor) July 31, 2012 at 07:16 PM
More than 20 years as Albertsons.

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