Saturday, March 28, 2009

Building Colonel Glenn IV: Meijer

Meijer is a USA version of the European "hypermarket" concept, which mixes big box retail and supermarket under one roof, sort of like merging a K-Mart with a Kroger. The firm started up in the Grand Rapids area and expanded into different markets in the Midwest.

In 1989-90 Meijer expanded into the Dayton market. One of its last stores here was on Colonel Glenn. Announced in 1990 and opened in 1991 or 92, it did pick up NIMBY static from the condos behind it (in Fairborn, the store is actually within Beavercreek city limits).

The site in 1989, outlined in yellow, across the street from the 1996-1999 AutoNation car lot and some "New Germany" fuzz. The diagonal of Zink Road to the west and WSU to the west:

The site today. The site planning is what's notable here. Meijer paid for some road realignments and connections, integrating it into the surrounding street system. And one can't really tell where WSU ends and Meijer property starts. Note that Meijer also sells gas; gas station to the left (west), along Colonel Glenn. Fairly good access control here, with entrances to Col Glenn being fairly limited.

The big box. Later Meijers (like the ones that opened in Chicago's western suburbs) have a more interesting facade treatment. In this case the left hand side is the supermarket and the right hand side is electronics and garden.

One of the more interesting features of the site planning is how the store integrates with WSU. The access drive to the store from the east also acts as a secondary access and back circulation for the very large WSU parking lot to the north. And a connection is made to Executive Boulevard (south of Colonel Glenn develoments) via a signalized interesection.

The Meijer retention basin is also the headwaters of the watercourse that eventually flows into WSU's "Valley of the Dorms"

WSU access road and WSU buildings in the distance, cleverly disguised as another suburban office park. Open space is either WSUs or being in held in speculation. One of the parcels here was very recently developed into a little strip center, visible in the aeriel above.

Meijer paid for the relignment of Zink Road as part of the zoning agreement with Beavercreek. Zink now works as parking access and access to the Meijer Gas station. One can also see the new apartment developments. Zink Road is probably one of the higher density areas in the Dayton region as it is nearly all apartments, condominiums, and dorms.

Old Zink Road has nearly disappeared, being replaced by an oversized cul-de-sac. This lone bungalow and neighboring frame ranch represent the some of last of old Zink Road and New Germany when it was an outlying settlement and perhaps early commuter suburb.

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