Friday, November 29, 2013

Acme — Levittown, Pennsylvania

Location: 6800 New Falls Rd, Levittown, PA

I visited the Levittown store this past September while out on the road photgraphing the last few New Jersey stores that still need to make their way to the blog. Since this one was just a quick jump over the border, I decided to get there while I had a chance. Levittown hit my radar about a year and a half ago when rumors started coming in that it was slated for closure but that was at a time when SuperValu was still running the chain into the ground. Fortunatley, that close-happy company is no longer calling the shots.

Acme opened on this site back in February 1956. The original store is technically still here but thoroughly disguised. Two expansions over the years essentially swallowed the original 50's flat-roof building. There aren't any clues of this to be found at ground level. One needs to hover over the building to see hints of its origins and to travel back in time to review its evolution. We'll, of course, do both down below.

Levittown has a unique facade. Quite sure it's a one-of-a-kind. Check out the fake owls along the roof line.

Unlike the last few store posts I've done, we're actually entering the correct side of the store here. This entrance leads into Produce. This half of the store is where the newer sections were added to over the years. The original 50's building stood at the far end of the building.

And like many store posts of late… this one has the Albertsons Marketplace remodel.

A quick look across the front-end before we tour the departments. The ceiling here is lower than we would normally see in 90's stores. The ceiling height throughout the store was limited by the height of the original Acme building.

We'll be seeing plenty of 90's decor artifacts around the store.

That works too. Check out the "N"… it's upside down!

The support columns down this aisle may have been where the exterior wall was located after the store's second expansion. Nice "shop the world" signage here.

Center aisle looking over to Dairy.

Coffin cases remain for a full aisle of frozen. This is how most 90's stores were originally setup, with these cases being swapped out later with the upright cases.

Center aisle looking over to the Bakery.

Heading back outside...

Another reminder of the SuperValu days. Acme's logo stripped off of the trailers.

Produce side of the store with the windows up at the front. No clues of the original building  along the sides or back of the store.

You can see this Acme sign from far down the road. I wonder if it was cut down from it's original height. The historic aerials don't reveal the height of the sign over the years. Often you can spot the shadows of these tower signs in the old images.

Arial Views...

The sunken section appears to be where the 50's model and the first expansion stood. The higher areas to the left and rear are the sections added after 1995.

We'll jump about a mile down New Falls Road for some other interesting sites...

In the above image, we see one of the Acme's main competitors, a big new Giant there on the left side of the image. The store opened in 2005, replacing a smaller, outdated model seen in the upper, right-hand corner. In between the two is a former A&P...

Now a fish and aquarium store. The awning and roof are both remarkably intact.

Check out A&P's weathervane…

Going back to a time when A&P stood all by itself on this property...


And now over to the abandoned Giant. This place brought back some good memories for me. I began shopping at Giant back in the early 90's when a lot of their stores looked this way. The interiors were very plain with virtually no decor. Beige walls with most department names done in chrome lettering. Remodels began soon after with these stores getting much more colorful interiors and the exteriors being reconfigured to look like this.

A shot of the Giant just a few years before it relocated.

Update 5.16.14: The Giant is currently being transformed into other stores.

Historical Aerials of the Acme...


For the last expansion, which occurred sometime after 1995, the building was expanded on the left side and along the entire back where an empty lot had existed previously.

As of 1995, the 50's building had been expanded on the left side and was most likely converted into the 33M/SuperSaver format. Notice the empty lot along the back of the property.

And in 1971, we see the original building with it's ridiculously huge parking lot.




This place was surprisingly busy while I was here although it seems to be a store where people grab a few things and go. The interior is certainly in need of freshening up. I wonder if the Willingboro remodel was just a one-shot deal or if the new owners are planning on carrying that low-budget remodel out at more locations. I certainly hope they do.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Happy Thanksgiving from Acme Style!

Thanksgiving Week Circular 1993

Classic circular courtesy of John from

WOW! That's a big turkey!