Town hall to discuss closure of Walnut Hills Kroger

Town hall 10 to noon Saturday
Posted at 3:59 PM, Jan 20, 2017
and last updated 2017-01-20 15:59:20-05

CINCINNATI -- A town hall meeting Saturday will provide information about the closure of the Walnut Hills Kroger and allow locals to voice their opinions.

The “Kroger Town Hall,” organized by theWalnut Hills Redevelopment Foundation, will take place from 10 a.m.- noon Saturday at Bush Recreation Center.

Kroger announced they were closing the store at 954 E. McMillan Street Dec. 2, citing a “significant” loss in profit over the last 25 years. The Walnut Hills Kroger will close in March, coinciding with the opening of a new University Plaza Kroger.

The new University Plaza Kroger is located about 1 mile away from the existing Walnut Hills Kroger, said Patty Leesemann, public affairs manager for Kroger.

But for some, 1 mile is too far. 

Tina Jackson said it takes her three minutes to walk to Kroger, but that will change come March.

“I'll have to catch a bus ... probably two buses to get to Kroger,” Jackson said.

Kroger has offered to pay for bus fare for people to get to the new store in Corryville, but Jackson said she is still sad to see the store go.

“A lot of people are going to be mad when they close this store because this is our only grocery store,” Jackson said.

Along with providing a place for voices to be heard, organizers of the town hall plan to provide potential solutions for keeping the neighborhood from becoming a food desert.

Those who walk to the Kroger on McMillan are not the only ones who will miss the Walnut Hills location.

Antionette Jones-Houser works at Ma'at Business Consultants & Paralegals across the street. She said the business depends on walk-ins.

“We receive a lot of foot traffic here,” Jones-Houser said. “A lot of foot traffic from people on their way to Kroger and back.”

Ma'at Business Consultants & Paralegals opened on McMillan about a year ago, but now that the Kroger is leaving, some fear their business will suffer.

“It's going to impact us greatly,” Jones-Houser said.