Discount Chain Lidl Announces 25 New Stores, Erie is Not on the List
The German discount chain Lidl is finally increasing the number of its stores in the United States. The company this week announced the locations of 25 new stores that will open by Spring 2020.
The West Erie Plaza is not on the list even though Lidl expressed interest in locating there about three years ago.
Lidl had big plans when they came to the Millcreek supervisors in 2016.. The company was going to open 100 stores in the U.S. by the summer of 2018. The stores would sell fresh produce, meat, baking items, and household products in stores with no frills and low prices.
However, something went wrong. According to a story by CNN, the first of the new stores were too big, and located too far away from urban hubs. Lidl apparently re-worked its plans and announced this week it will open 25 new stores in the U.S. over the next year. Those stores would be smaller and located in high traffic areas such as West 12th Street. Millcreek, however, was not one of the 25 on the list.
Erie News Now reached out to Lidl and asked when Erie will see its store. Public Relations Director Chandler Ebeier responded by e-mail with the words." We are continuing to expand along the east coast and as we have more to share for your area, we will be sure to get in touch."
Matt Waldinger, Director of Planning and Development for Millcreek Township, says it's unusual that a company would get all of its paperwork approved for a project and not proceed.
"It's not normal,” he said. “We've had had cases of it throughout the years where some developers will either lose interest or maybe even potentially the places go bankrupt after plans are in place. But this is the first time that somebody has actually come up with a plan, gotten everything done, and they're still building stores. They're just not moving on this site at all."
The 25 stores to be built this year are all several hundred miles east or south of Erie. Two will be in Pennsylvania, one in Philadelphia, and one in Trooper, near Norristown.
Erie must continue to wait for a western expansion.