It took a little longer than we would have originally expected, but it seems a former supermarket is finally getting torn down on Ridge Avenue. It was about two and a half years ago that we told you that developers had purchased the property at 1614-20 Ridge Ave. and were going to the ZBA with plans to tear down the unexciting structure and replace it with a building with 28 apartments, 3 retail spaces, and 17 parking spots. Alas, here we are after all this time and the building remains, as does the billboard on its roof that’s currently advertising ‘Gunk.’

Fence Around The Building
Fence around the building

But look! There’s a fence around the building! And the developers pulled a demolition permit last month! This is a pretty strong indication that the demolition activity should be starting soon and that the project will be happening in the near future. As to the reason for the delay, we couldn’t tell you, but we do see that the property changed hands last year, selling for $1.4M. The developers that took the property through zoning purchased it for $675K in 2014, which just goes to show the added value of approved plans as well as the increased heat of the market over the last couple years.

Newish Building Next Door
Newish building next door

When we last covered the former supermarket, the lot next door was sitting vacant, though we had told you about plans for a mixed-use building there. As you can see in the image above, that building has indeed been built, though it doesn’t appear as though there’s a tenant in the ground floor retail space. That’s a pretty common theme for new buildings on Ridge Avenue these days, and we wonder whether the developers at 1614-20 Ridge Ave. will look to attract one large tenant or three smaller tenants on the first floor. According to plans, there’s a combined 4,500 sqft of retail space with the same amount of room in the basement. That kind of space could accommodate an anchor tenant for this corridor, which is crying out for some local businesses to take the plunge. Who’s it gonna be? And when?