Kroger to build $20 million store in Brownsburg

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Kroger Co. has started work on a $20 million project that will replace its existing Brownsburg store at 905 N. Green St. with a brand-new one within the same shopping center.

Demolition began Monday at the former Kmart store at 975 N. Green St. in the Brownsburg Square shopping center. That space has been vacant since Kmart closed there in September 2017.

Click for a larger image. Renderings of a planned new Kroger in Brownsburg, designed by CR Architecture & Design. (Renderings courtesy of Kroger)

The 83,000-square-foot Kmart had been one of the two anchor stores for the shopping center, which is at the southeast corner of Green Street and Northfield Drive, just south of Interstate 74. Kroger occupies the plaza’s other anchor spot, with several smaller retailers located between the two.

After six to eight weeks of demolition, Kroger expects to begin building a new 101,744-square-foot store that will replace its existing location. The new store will be about 30,000 square feet larger than Kroger’s existing Brownsburg store, said Kroger spokesman Eric Halvorson.

In the larger space, the new Kroger will include several new features that are not part of the current Brownsburg store, including an in-house Starbucks coffee shop with indoor seating, a Murray’s Cheese Shop, a grocery pick-up area that can serve eight cars at once, additional parking, enhanced energy efficiency and an expansion of most store departments, including the pharmacy.

Weather permitting this winter, Kroger expects to have the new store complete in about a year.

Meanwhile, plans are already in place to backfill the existing Kroger space with new tenants once the grocery store moves to its new digs.

Lee & Associates handles the property management and leasing for Brownsburg Square.

As part of a grandfather arrangement, Indianapolis-based McCrea Property Group LLC is also in negotiations with three potential tenants for the Kroger space.

Keith Fried, a senior leasing associate at McCrea, said all of those potential tenants are “junior box” retailers, whose stores are typically between 10,000 and 40,000 square feet.

Fried declined to say who those retailers are because lease agreements haven’t yet been signed. If all three of those tenants sign leases, Fried said, they would take up all but about 6,500 square feet of the available space.

Lee & Associates is also talking with prospective shopping center tenants, said Scot Courtney, president of the firm’s Indianapolis office.

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4 thoughts on “Kroger to build $20 million store in Brownsburg

  1. Why didn’t the Brownsburg Zoning Board force Kroger to terminate the lease on the former Marsh location on US 136 as part of its approval of this new construction? Kroger has a monopoly on the food supply in Brownsburg since Marsh closed its stores. (and I’m sorry but the market share held by all other grocery options is miniscule at best).

    1. That’s a good question, Mark. The Wal-Mart Super Center across the street is the only real competition Kroger has in Brownsburg. I don’t think their market share is minuscule, but Kroger could indeed use more competition.

    2. That’s a great point, except: unless there is a zoning petition affecting the property pending before the board, the zoning authorities cannot assume jurisdiction. Even IF there were a pending petition, Indiana law doesn’t facilitate these kinds of “deals.”

      Typically, if a category-competition arrangement is made, it’s done between developers, or by an economic development organization, as part of a larger incentive deal. This story doesn’t mention whether the Brownsburg or county economic development officials put incentives into this overall deal. I doubt it–none were needed. The redevelopment seems to be taking place, driven by market forces and interaction among the players: shopping center owners, retailer, and the entity which controls the former KMart space (if it’s still under bankruptcy court control), without local government incentives being needed.

      As for competition….Wal-Mart is typically a market leader because of their aggressive pricing. Kroger is a strong match in that regard. Wal-Mart’s Brownsburg food market share is likely not miniscule. In almost every market Wal Mart is in, they’re dominant or close to the top. This is to food chains going head-to-head, each with massive buying power.

  2. So there will now be three Starbucks locations in Brownsburg, all within walking distance of one-another. The town is becoming New York City in that regard!