A local grocery store, Hills Market, has announced that it will open a store in downtown Columbus. The store is to open this spring in a 12,000 square foot facility at 95 North Grant Avenue, right next to the Columbus College of Art and Design and the residential development along Gay Street.
This is great news for those of us who are interested in seeing more people living in downtown Columbus. Having amenities like grocery stores, dry cleaners, wine shops, and other basic necessities of modern life within walking distance is a crucial part of urban living. It just doesn’t make sense to move downtown if you need to hop into your car and drive to a suburb to buy food.
For a long time, there was a chicken-and-egg element to the issue of a downtown grocery store. Which comes first: the store, or the residents who will use it? Now we don’t need to worry about that question any more. Hills Market also is a perfect store for a downtown location because it offers organic options and specialty foods and therefore might attract downtown office workers who want to pick up something interesting for dinner before they head home.
I’m betting the Hills Market move causes more businesses to look seriously at the downtown market and lead more people to think about moving there, too.