Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Remolded Willingoboro!



Location: 2091 Route 130, Willingboro, NJ

Last September we had a preview of the remodel here when it was nearly complete. The Grand Reopening was held on October 18th, a very exciting event for a store that was rumored to be closing for many years. Its big break apparently came when the Pathmark, just across Route 130, was marked for closure. Willingboro's remodel was well underway as closing sales were in full swing at the Pathmark. We'll be taking a visit to that store after we're done at the Acme. 


When I first heard Willingboro was to be remodeled, I wondered if Alberstons, the new owners of Acme, was going to bring their latest decor package to the store. (Pictures of that package can be seen in the "Preview" post.) I figured that would be happening at some point just like it did during the first Alberstons go around in the early 2000's. Not being thrilled with what I had seen of their decor up to that point, I was glad to hear Willingoboro was getting the third version of the Premium Fresh & Healthy package. Now that we've see how Alberstons brilliantly adapted their decor to Devon, it would have been nice if Willingboro had the same look. Oh well. Things still turned out very well for Willingoboro. The store has a fresh new look and a reduction in competition.


The previous Red/White/Blue decor has been painted over throughout the store. All hanging box light have been removed and the cases in every department have been painted black. It does look like some have been replaced entirely but I believe most were just painted.



Produce Before...



Looks like new tile in the Melon Bar but a closer look reveals the old tile have simply painted over. I can't tell if they painted it badly or of it's already coming off at the edges. Hope they kept a couple extra cans paint so this stripe can be freshened up as needed.


The new aisle markers bring a nice bold look here thanks to the very high ceilings. Interesting to think Acme's use of 3 sided aisle markers dates all the way back to the Red/White/Blue decor days. You can have a look at an old picture from the Burlington store by clicking here. Willingboro had the more commonly used two-sided aisle markers.




The old Bakery sign panel was left up on the all. I mentioned that in the preview post from last September...


Remodel in progress here. The donut case has since been painted tan.

Bakery Before...


Back to post remodel...


No "lancaster brand" sign.




The 90's floor was left in place throughout the store. The "Max Pac" lights have been removed! They hung from the ceiling at this end of the store when the department was added in the 90's...


The lights remained even though the department had been long removed. Max Pac departments were installed in Acme's to help compete with the warehouse clubs poping up throughout the 90's.







Deli and Seafood Before...



The 90's tile on the back wall of the Deli has also been painted to match the walls.



Frozen Food Aisle Before...









Seems to be a little mix-up here. The blue colored aisle markers are usually used for health and beauty aid aisles. Never for food.


The Dairy cases look brand new!


Floral has been removed from the font corner as we saw in the preview post from September. That department along with "Card and Gifts" has become the paper products aisle.



Pharmacy Before...













Floral downsized to a freestanding department by the entrance. The lattice and ivy along the top of the case that we saw in the preview post has been removed...




Exiting on the Pharmacy side. The registers look to have been replaced. Their lights, however, were not. You can see the custom designed lights for this decor package by clicking here and here.






Heading over to the Edgewater Park Pathmark just across Route 130. One of the former Acmes of Willingboro is also noted on the image. For more details about that location, please visit the original Willingboro post by clicking here.



 Location: 4355 Route 130, Edgewater Park, NJ


The Edgewater Park Pathmark closed Friday September 6 2013, along with the Cherry Hill and Camden location. This was one of the oldest surviving Pathmarks, having opened in 1968.


The store now sits abandoned...


"Path to Savings" decor package here which was done in the early to mid 2000's. Upgraded with the "SAVE" messaging after Pathmark was purchased by A&P. The plan was to make Pathmark the "price impact" banner of the two chains. Didn't quite work out. A&P has been throwing every idea at the wall to save Pathmark, pretty much the same thing Pathmark was doing through the 2000's. A&P's latest attempt at was to tailor the stores to the local communities in which they serve. They must not have had much success with that approach. CEO Sam Martin got the boot in January of this year. Can't blame the guy for trying…


You can see glimpses of Pathmark's latest decor package in the commercial. I have a store with this look fully photographed and will get it up on the blog one of these day. 






Previous decor package tiles can be seen where the registers once stood.

A look at Pathmark's final days...

These pictures were sent in a while back by an Acme Style fan...
























I wish Pathmark nothing but the best but I'm glad to see the Acme won this battle!

3 comments:

  1. There also once was an A&P in Willingboro a block south of Village Mall (home of the 33M Acme in Willingboro replaced by the current Acme). It opened in 1959 and closed in 1981, but after quite a while of sitting empty, it reopened as a Super Fresh. Unlike most early A&P to Super Fresh conversions, this store had a major remodel done to rid the store of its past A&P looks, and an expansion. Due to this it surprises me that after the store closed in 1995 (not long after the current Acme opened), it was split into a Goodwill store, a Family Dollar, and a Wine & Spirits... a real shame because obviously this Super Fresh would seem to have had more potential than most other early ones. Also in Willingboro, there was once an Ames that opened in 1976 and closed in 1996, after Ames opened at the much bigger former Clover in nearby Cinnaminson. I'm not sure what happened to the Clover building after the Ames chain shut down, but the original Willingboro Ames looks to have been torn down soon after closing, yet nothing new was ever built on the site in the past 15 years. You can still see the outline of the former Ames in map views!

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  2. Is "Premium Fresh and Healthy" series an actual name for Albertson's current string of interior design packages or is it just a nickname to describe the d├ęcor. I personally think that its kind of a uninspiring name using 3 well worn buzzwords ("premium" "fresh" and "healthy" all overused words since the 80s IMHO) if I were Albertsons/Acme considering that the company is :born again with new owners, turning the corner and (corporately at least) in a huge expansion mode and that it has been free from the Supervalu doldrums I would have used something more like "Revival" or "New Era" that's just my two cents on it

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    1. I don't know if Alberstons ever referred to the decor package as "Premium Fresh and Healthy" but Acme certainly did. Former President Judy Spires couldn't stop yapping about it when they first rolled it out. It was never quiet as ground breaking as she thought it was. I'm not sure if the third version, which is seen in Willingboro, was officially referred to as a version of the PF&H package but many blog participants referred to it as such. All 3 versions of PF&H are now dead and buried. Sent packing along with SuperValu. Willingboro probably wound up with this SuperValu package since Alberstons was still in the process of acquiring the company. Easier to put in an established package than to transition one from their stores, which they did wind up doing in more recent remodels. They latest remodel, which can be seen in the Devon post, is being referred to on the blog as "Quality Built".

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