Construction begins this fall on Meijer store on Detroit's east side

Candice Williams
The Detroit News

Construction will begin this fall on a long-awaited Meijer development on Detroit's east side.

The 42,000-square-foot store, a small-format version to be called Meijer Rivertown Market, will sit on three parcels of vacant land at 1475 E. Jefferson. It will include 100 surface parking spaces.

A rendering of the small-format Meijer, called Rivertown Market, being built at 1475 E. Jefferson in Detroit.

Construction on the $15.6 million project. is expected to be complete in late summer 2021, said Dennis Archer Jr., of Jefferson Larned Development Company LLC.

“While we do have a number of well-run local neighborhood grocery stores, I think the city of Detroit and their residents deserve the same number of options that residents who live in the suburbs have,” Archer said. “So we’re happy to contribute that to the community.”

The project is not far from where he grew up, Archer added.

Improvements to the site will also include stormwater maintenance, landscaping and sidewalks.

A brownfield plan for the project was among several items the Michigan Strategic Fund Board approved this week. It results in a $573,144 state tax capture.  

“The project will provide a local fresh market grocery store that will allow area residents to shop in the downtown,” Michigan Economic Development Corporation staff wrote in a project outline. “The project promotes a walkable community as it provides infill development on a site that has been vacant for many years and connects other adjacent developed sites. Additionally, the project will generate new jobs and new state and local property and income taxes.

The project is expected to create 72 full-time equivalent jobs and hire neighborhood trainees. The average hourly wage will be $18.

The development was initially announced as a mixed-use development including housing in 2017, but was scaled back due to the rising construction costs, Archer said. 

The store on East Jefferson will be Meijer’s third Detroit location. The first location opened in 2013 in the Gateway Marketplace at Eight Mile and Woodward. The second opened in 2015 at the former Redford High School at Grand River and McNichols.

Twitter: @CWilliams_DN