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Met Market in Upper Queen Anne prepares to close

May 15th, 2012 by Cory Bergman

Metropolitan Market on Queen Anne Ave. N is preparing to say goodbye to Upper Queen Anne after four decades in the neighborhood. This week, the store began handing out coupons encouraging shoppers to begin to shift their shopping habits to the Lower Queen Anne/Uptown location, which will remain open. Met Market on the hill is planning to close in mid-July.

Met Market’s Brad Halverson told us the development planned for the Queen Anne Ave. location was out of the company’s price range. “We worked closely with Emerald Bay Equity for 3 years to try and make something work. But in the end, the redevelopment as designed was just too expensive for us,” Halverson said, who’s VP of marketing for Met Markets. “The grocery business runs on pennies and nickels and at the end of the day, some features of the redevelopment – customer flow, underground parking and equipment location were making it more expensive.”

The development planned for the lot will span the entire block on Queen Anne Ave. between West Crockett and West Howe streets with a mix of retail and luxury apartments. As you may be able to see from the project rendering above, Met Market initially planned to be a part of the facility but withdrew. As we reported earlier this year, the project hasn’t been without controversy, with some neighbors expressing concern over parking and traffic impact.

Emerald Bay Equity’s Joe Geivett told Queen Anne View that construction on portions of the site will begin in June or early July with “major construction anticipated to begin in August.” As for a replacement tenant for Met Market, Geivett says he can’t comment.

Queen Anne resident Becky Sparks Parker emailed us to express her dismay that Met Market is leaving the top of the hill. “(It’s) is not just my favorite neighborhood grocery store, it is my daily dose of inspiration for food & home, which is central to my family’s life,” she writes. “How often have I chatted with Rachel about parenthood while she scans my groceries, or received the latest tip from the ‘wine guy’ on which bottle under $15 to serve at my upcoming backyard BBQ, or been inspired by the food demo for what to serve my family that night? So often in fact that I have apparently taken it for granted and I am sad to see it go. It is truly one of the last neighborhood grocery stores that does not act like a chain and treats its customer with love and respect.”

“Thank you doesn’t say enough,” says Met Market’s Halverson. “We started in Queen Anne in 1971 and wouldn’t be the company we are today without the loyal support of the Queen Anne community…. We put down roots together, grew up together, and have been part of each others lives since. We take great pride in being a central destination in Queen Anne life.”

Halverson says the Upper Queen Anne market just began handing out Queen Anne Appreciation Cards “good for money to be used for shopping now at the 1st and Mercer store, and we will be continuing with offers on that card for the next several months.” Offers include cash to spend on groceries, free sandwiches, free produce, discounts and more. Just ask to receive one.

Many of the employees now working at the Queen Anne Ave. store will be transferring to the 1st and Mercer location, Halverson tells us. “We hope it becomes your new home,” he says.

By the way, Met Market also plans to continue its support of the Queen Anne Helpline, the Queen Anne Farmers Market, FOLKpark and other neighborhood fixtures.

Have a favorite Met Market story to share? Let us know in comments…

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