The table is being set for a large grocery store to move into downtown Saskatoon but it’s too early to say when it will happen.
The Saskatoon Regional Economic Development Authority (SREDA) has various incentive programs for growth and expansion and further consideration could be given for grants and tax abatements for a potential grocery operator.
David Gauthier, SREDA’s vice-president of corporate development and investor relations, has had discussions with one “fairly large” chain that is looking at property just outside of the downtown core and a local entrepreneur considering opening up a smaller grocery store downtown.
The closure of Good Food Junction six months ago has left a gaping hole in the grocery market downtown and also contributed to a rising vacancy rate in Saskatoon’s central business district.
“Without a grocery store, fewer people are going to choose to live downtown,” Gauthier said.