Since Walgreens moved out of the vast retail space at Michigan St. NE and Diamond Ave. NE about a year ago, the building and parking lot have remained sadly vacant except for the occasional construction contractor working on the interior.
But by September, the store next to Logan's Alley will reopen as a Goodwill resale shop, sporting a new roofline and new landscaping. The revamp of the 12,850-square-foot building includes the addition of a drive-through donation drop-off on the west side.
Goodwill Communications Officer Jill Wallace says Goodwill has eyed the Michigan Street/Medical Mile corridor for some time. Increased traffic and activity, especially by people traveling to and from work in the Medical Mile, is a good fit for Goodwill, combined with changes in recent years concerning the type of customer Goodwill attracts.
"There are still lower income people who shop at Goodwill, certainly, but the majority of people who shop at Goodwill now are looking to upcycle," Wallace says. "Upcycling and recycling have becoming a way of life; it's not a trend anymore, which has changed Goodwill significantly. People aren't coming to Goodwill because they are low income, but because they want to save the environment."
Wallace says the new store will create 20 jobs where Goodwill can place people from its job training programs. The store is just around the corner from the Goodwill job training and placement services center at 455 Grand Ave. NE.
Wallace says the new store will look and feel more like a department store than the Goodwill stores of the past, based on a new retail model the company is adopting for all its stores.
Store hours: Mon. - Sat., 9 a.m. to 8 p.m.; Sun., 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Source: Jill Wallace, Goodwill Industries
Writer: Deborah Johnson Wood, Development News Editor