Kowalski’s wants to take over former Rainbow location in Shoreview




Kowalski’s wants to take over former Rainbow location in Shoreview

Kowalski’s may soon move into the former Rainbow Foods store at County Road 96 and Hodgson Road in Shoreview.

Kowalski’s and city officials have been working with developer Oppidan on a proposal for the property, with the plan going before Shoreview’s Planning Commission on Jan. 26, said Mike Oase, Kowalski’s vice president of operations.

The Woodbury-based company hopes to begin renovations in April and be up and running by Thanksgiving 2016, Oase said.

The 68,000-square-foot building, which Rainbow built in the mid-1990s, has been empty since the chain’s parent company pulled out of the Twin Cities market in July 2014.

“The community … really wanted another grocery at that site,” Shoreview Mayor Sandy Martin said.

Kowalski’s has been eyeing the Shoreview market for some time, Oase said. Plans for the store include a wine and liquor store, a coffee shop and full-service meat and deli counters.

In addition to the 28,000-square-foot grocery, the building would house a food production site.

The company has outgrown its current production facility in Mahtomedi and will likely sell that property, Oase said.

“We’re kind of bursting at the seams there,” he added.

The store and production facility would each employ about 100 people. The majority of the groce

ry store employees would be new hires, while most of the production employees would be transferred from Mahtomedi, Oase said.

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