Friday, June 19, 2015

Acme – Ocean City, New Jersey


Location: 3428 Simpson Ave, Ocean City, NJ 


The Ocean City store opened as a pitched-roof model on June 14, 1967. In 2000, it was expanded and extensively remodeled with the Albertsons Marketplace decor. The original building was thankfully left intact. In the mid-2000's, the store received the Premium Fresh and Healthy refresh which included new department signs, aisle markers and the Alberstons leaf on the walls. Not sure if any significant work was done to the store at that time. Finally, this past winter the store underwent another extensive remodel. Back in January, we saw a few pictures as things were underway The photos will are included in this post. About a third of the store, which included all of the service departments, was closed off for rearranging. The results are very nice but despite all of the renovating that was done this past winter, the decor and department signage sadly remains the same. Some of it looking even worse than before the remodel. That all said, this is one wickedly awesome Acme!


A fresh paint job to the outside with the same flags decorating the store as we saw in Beach Haven.  Both stores held their grand reopening on May 22nd.


We'll head in on this side...


It would have been nice to at least see a refresh here in the vestibule with the new logo on the wall.


A quick look across the front-end. The lattice structure above the checkouts has been removed and the Customer Service signage has been updated. All new flooring throughout the store. Below is a picture of this area back in 2010...




Turning towards Produce...


I believe Produce used to line the first aisle. It has since been moved to the front corner occupying an alcove created by moving the Deli and relocating the Bakery to the back of the store.


No signage for the new Produce Department.




The Bakery and Deli used to be paired up in this location as you can see below...


All back lighting has apparently been removed from the department signs. It's so dark now you can't even see the word "deli" up on the wall. Black and white photos have been put into the blue light boxes, minus the light. They're barely noticeable. So much work was put into the store and the results are fantastic but it seems like they completely forget all about the walls.


I believe this is where Produce used to be located. Now it's the gluten free and natural aisle. All black shelving which we'll see soon in another remodel. Mostly national branded products here with O Organics and Open Nature scattered throughout the store.






The Bakery is now along the back in the spot formally used for the Butcher Block. Check out the poorly placed "y" above. This are before the remodel is just below...


The Butcher Block has been moved to the pitched-roof portion of the building, along the back wall.




Aisles 1 through 3 are in the newer portion of the building. 


Aisle 4 is located where the pitched-roof meets the addition. You can see this area during the remodel below...


Rough time for shoppers during the remodel. A good 5 aisles eliminated along with the service departments. 


Immaculately clean and meticulously stocked! That's how Acme rolls these day. 


Wild Harvest products still lingering around. The O Orgaincs brand is growing on me. I do like how all of the products in the line are orgainic whereas Wild Harvest was a mix of organic while others were just "natural". If you were't paying close attention to the labels, you might miss the distinction. 






The back wall has opened up to make way for the new Butcher Block. You can see this wall before the remodel below...



The letters removed from the original spot and glued on the wall here. Barely visible on the dark brown background. It just seems like with all the work that was done here, even a minor freshening of the walls and department signage was in order. 


The Acme sign once located along the front has been replaced with windows flooding the store with natural light. 








Dairy was expanded to the whole aisle. Before the remodel, frozen cases lined the left side which you can see below...




Some more Wild Harvest products seen in the milk case.




Ailes 13 and 14 are in an alcove in the front corner...


This used to be the Produce delivery area prior to the store's expansion.






"Express Checkout" signage has been made for the old checkout lights. Additional express registers are also located at Customer Service. The self-checkouts have been removed.


A similiar situation to Beach Haven with an outdoor cage area stocked with beach toys and accessories.




This store is supposed to have a Chamber of Commerce Booth which I didn't see inside.

AERIAL VIEWS









HISTORIC IMAGES


2006
This place does booming business in the summer. It's the first store everyone comes to when heading to the island. A SuperFresh is located on the island about 3 miles north and stands on the property of a former Acme...


1957
A look at the former Acme at 800 West Ave. The store opened on June 28, 1957 and as reported in the comments section in the original post, closed around 1980 when a deal for lease renewal could not be worked out. To visit Ocean City's original post, please click here.


2002


1995
The original pitched-roof building back in 1995 perhaps joined with a gas station there at the corner of the parking lot. There were rumors going around years back that the Acme was going to close and Wawa was preparing to build on the property. Never happened.


1991


1987


1970


1963

One of the most unique Acmes in existence today! If you get a chance to visit this store, do not pass it up!!

23 comments:

  1. They ought to give it the full Quality Built treatment!

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  2. The interior looks way cooler than the exterior would indicate...especially with the natural light. ...such a unique touch. It feels so open and the color of the ceiling works well.
    As for this "Loves local" campaign. Is there any substance to it or is it just another meaningless slogan? How are guacamole and tilapia local to Southern Jersey? Most U.S.-sold tilapia is sourced in Vietnam and China, and the key ingredient in guacamole, avocados, are grown mostly in Mexico and California. Seems like a lot of marketing-speak but with absolutely no sincerity or substance. Or am I missing something key? It feels very corporate with little thought behind it.

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    1. I'm not quite sure about the "Loves Local" campaign. Seems like they're kinda jumping on the hot buzzword of the moment. They are making the guacamole in-store, so I guess it's local in that sense. Other signs do include foods that are sort of made in the store. I've been keeping my eye out for some sort of advertising that explains this campaign but haven't come across anything.

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    2. Certainly it was something Albertsons Inc. never quite got the hang of, leading to trouble. The United division understands its market from what I've seen, though given the amount of extra leeway United has from the rest of the company, they might as well be totally different. It remains to be seen if Acme will actually locally merchandise.

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    3. It just makes the place feel completely soulless. I agree that it's the trend du-jour, but here it feels especially devoid of meaning and effort. Each ShopRite has a 'local" kiosk where there is a life-size cutout of a farmer guy (which I always think is a real person) and each week the kiosk features produce sourced from NY/NJ/PA--each labelled with the town they were grown. Whole Foods does something similar...but here....you know you will see those same signs in Chicago at Jewel and Boston at Star. Just kills me that after all the failed stores and lost shoppers...these guys still don't get it. But then again, maybe the people who still shop here aren't really the ones who care about such things.

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    4. For a few years under SuperValu's leadership, Acme had "local" produce displays during the summer months.

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  3. I love this store. I'm there at least once a month during the summer. By the way, I have a bunch of in-remodel shots, would you like me to send them?

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    1. Sure! Send them in. I'll add them to the post.

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  4. I think the customer service booth got the new signage. In the 2nd interior shot, there is the 3-sided sign which looks to be the new décor. The way they put up the décor again looks pretty temporary, leading me to think this might be a pre-remodel where they do all the extreme work now, so they can come back in a few months/years and swap out the décor no problem. They might have broken up the remodeling into different sections so they could have it all done by this summer and have the next part during the winter. Lets face it, they really shouldn't have bothered going through all that beautiful work on the flooring, shelving, and lighting if they were just going to do a seemingly half-assed job on the old décor.

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    1. I mentioned that Customer Signage has been updated. Can't image they'd hold a grand reopening celebration for a store that's only half done.

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  5. Safeway's O Organics brand is now being used in Albertsons stores in the Seattle area.

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  6. Is the OCNJ Super Fresh still open?

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  7. Why does Acme have no photography signs at their stores? They seem to be cool with this blog though. The new Cerberus people seem to appreciate Acme's rich history and I would hope they change the store policy.

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    1. They do have signs, or at least did have signs. It's kinda of a losing battle with the camera phones these days. You're not supposed to take pictures at concerts either. 7 years in, they've never said anything to me about it and they send me press releases so I think they kinda like Acme Style!

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    2. Only sign like that I have seen was at the old Parkesburg store, which I took a picture of. I am such a bad person.��
      https://www.flickr.com/photos/132911176@N03/18428946634/in/dateposted-public/

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    3. Supervalu gave my Flickr page some trouble a few years back, but they backed down pretty quickly; all I had to do was use the sentence "I've consulted a lawyer".

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    4. I've been spoken to at two stores in the past few months for using my phone for photography. One was at the former Secaucus Acme, where an employee told me to stop taking photos of "her" store and get out, and she nearly phoned the police. The other was the former Lyndhurst Edward's, where an employee asked me, "Are you taking photos of me?" after I snapped a photo of the pharmacy sign above her head. I denied, and then made a run for the exit. I find the "no photo" policy to be stupid, honestly.

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    5. I never look at my phone when I'm taking a picture so people don't have a clue what I'm doing. Thousands of photos later, my only close call was in the Willingboro Acme when an employee asked me "can I help you with something?" She had seen me in several aisles yet I wasn't carrying anything but my phone.

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  8. It must have a different feel to it in person, because I can't quite warm up to the exterior. It's almost as if two separate stores were just haphazardly stuck together. The newer work and facade does nothing to honor the more historical part of the store. It actually puts the old pitched roof in the background, where I think it should have been emphasized. Now it's almost as if they were forced to leave it there by some historical council. I would have liked to see a more balanced look, with new construction on both sides (though I realize from the aerials that it might have been next to impossible to acquire the adjoining land plus the street), or better yet, rebuild the store as one new larger pitched roof. Though the seasonality of the store may have prevented that as well.

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  9. You may need a slight edit to that comment under the 2006 historic photo (Another Acme, a former Superfresh...) :)

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