Fred Meyer Remodels Continue

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Super S
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Re: Fred Meyer Remodels Continue

Post by Super S » December 2nd, 2018, 9:15 am

SamSpade wrote:
November 28th, 2018, 9:02 am
I truly hope Kroger has Idaho Falls on its 2019 update list. I was in the store with my mom this holiday weekend and while they do have some good things (no yellow shirt door employees making you feel like you're shoplifting) the store is really falling behind in both modern Kroger trends in their own company as well as contemporary retailing in general.

In the bedding department, there was one of those "short" display prop mattresses still out but no sheets or items on top of it. The department signs in home / hardware are all the original ones so sun fade is sinking in.

In grocery, the meat/seafood display and dairy and freezer cases are all original from when the store opened in 1997. Those are probably becoming quite inefficient and requiring maintenance. With Kroger pushing "green" a few years ago, seems strange. The aisles all still have florescent light bulbs above the aisles, something most locations lost at least a decade ago. Natural choices is a separate department. Wine and beer is small.

Home electronics is still a huge separate department at the front of the store including the dated "Music market" cursive logo. Thank goodness this store was "post neon" or it would really look like a turkey.

The exterior has the old Fred Meyer name/logo on the building as well as peeling paint on the store address (faded red) and Garden Center signs. The exterior paint was at least in good shape overall.

It is unusual for Fred Meyer to go that long without a remodel. But it seems like they are placing slightly more effort in stores in the Portland area, some not going even 10 years between remodels, while others might go 15-20 years. But they do tend to be pretty thorough when they do remodel at least (although some aspects of the remodels like polished concrete aren't the best choice)

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Re: Fred Meyer Remodels Continue

Post by storewanderer » December 2nd, 2018, 9:52 am

SamSpade wrote:
November 28th, 2018, 9:02 am
I truly hope Kroger has Idaho Falls on its 2019 update list. I was in the store with my mom this holiday weekend and while they do have some good things (no yellow shirt door employees making you feel like you're shoplifting) the store is really falling behind in both modern Kroger trends in their own company as well as contemporary retailing in general.

In the bedding department, there was one of those "short" display prop mattresses still out but no sheets or items on top of it. The department signs in home / hardware are all the original ones so sun fade is sinking in.

In grocery, the meat/seafood display and dairy and freezer cases are all original from when the store opened in 1997. Those are probably becoming quite inefficient and requiring maintenance. With Kroger pushing "green" a few years ago, seems strange. The aisles all still have florescent light bulbs above the aisles, something most locations lost at least a decade ago. Natural choices is a separate department. Wine and beer is small.

Home electronics is still a huge separate department at the front of the store including the dated "Music market" cursive logo. Thank goodness this store was "post neon" or it would really look like a turkey.

The exterior has the old Fred Meyer name/logo on the building as well as peeling paint on the store address (faded red) and Garden Center signs. The exterior paint was at least in good shape overall.

I was surprised they remodeled Pocatello. I kind of felt like Idaho Falls, Twin Falls, and Pocatello were in limbo after they converted the Utah Stores to Smiths Marketplace. Especially as time has gone on how similar the Kroger banners have become, often running the same ads, etc., it is a little strange to have two different divisions putting out resources to operate in the same medium sized towns.

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Re: Fred Meyer Remodels Continue

Post by Super S » December 2nd, 2018, 2:35 pm

storewanderer wrote:
December 2nd, 2018, 9:52 am


I was surprised they remodeled Pocatello. I kind of felt like Idaho Falls, Twin Falls, and Pocatello were in limbo after they converted the Utah Stores to Smiths Marketplace. Especially as time has gone on how similar the Kroger banners have become, often running the same ads, etc., it is a little strange to have two different divisions putting out resources to operate in the same medium sized towns.
True, but then again many towns of varying sizes in WA/OR have Fred Meyer and QFC in the same markets...

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Re: Fred Meyer Remodels Continue

Post by Brian Lutz » December 6th, 2018, 7:20 am

Yesterday I was able to stop in at the newly remodeled Monroe Fred Meyer store. Pretty standard remodel all things considered, but a couple of things stood out:

- This remodel kept the tile floors. The floor in this store had the obvious expected wear but otherwise still seemed to be in serviceable condition. The tile floor from the older decor package doesn't quite match up with the newer one, but it's still an improvement over polished concrete (and far better than the floor disaster in the Bellevue store.)

- As far as I can tell They all but completely eliminated the electronics department in this store. As of right now electronics consists of three aisles across from the toy section. One with TVs (and not particularly large ones), one with movies and video games, and one with various accessories. I've seen other remodels (Kirkland) either shrink electronics or move it to a different part of the store (Bellevue moved it to a back corner) and it's possible they could still be working on that, but it's really odd to see it reduced that much.

- They have Scan Bag Go in this store, which is (as far as I know) the first store in this area to have it.

Aside from that, not a ton to write about here.

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Re: Fred Meyer Remodels Continue

Post by Super S » January 29th, 2019, 7:44 pm

Longview update: Most of the store is done, with some work still going on in produce. For the most part things are typical for Fred Meyer, and they have added Scan Bag Go.

But one thing is baffling me: the lighting. The store has rows of 8 foot T8 fluorescent fixtures that were installed in the last remodel of 2003. A few rows were removed on the GM side and replaced with LED 6-tube, 4 foot fixtures that are common for Fred Meyer. As for the rest of the store, the old fixtures still remain, with a number of bulbs randomly out, and no sign of new conduit/wiring etc. Meanwhile, they have added new fixtures which illuminate department signage, and have also installed new track lighting/spotlights in the Produce area. It gives the impression they gave up after installing those fixtures on the GM side. They have hung up new signage as well as aisle markers, and it seems really odd that the rest of the store is this far along if they are going with new fixtures which will have to be maneuvered around shelving, new coolers, etc. I guess they can be installed at any time, but it just seems odd.

Speaking of lighting, the old, dim mercury vapor lights are still present in the entryways as well as the overhang around the front of the store.

Perhaps lighting will be the very last thing addressed?

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Re: Fred Meyer Remodels Continue

Post by architect » January 29th, 2019, 8:19 pm

Super S wrote:
January 29th, 2019, 7:44 pm
Longview update: Most of the store is done, with some work still going on in produce. For the most part things are typical for Fred Meyer, and they have added Scan Bag Go.

But one thing is baffling me: the lighting. The store has rows of 8 foot T8 fluorescent fixtures that were installed in the last remodel of 2003. A few rows were removed on the GM side and replaced with LED 6-tube, 4 foot fixtures that are common for Fred Meyer. As for the rest of the store, the old fixtures still remain, with a number of bulbs randomly out, and no sign of new conduit/wiring etc. Meanwhile, they have added new fixtures which illuminate department signage, and have also installed new track lighting/spotlights in the Produce area. It gives the impression they gave up after installing those fixtures on the GM side. They have hung up new signage as well as aisle markers, and it seems really odd that the rest of the store is this far along if they are going with new fixtures which will have to be maneuvered around shelving, new coolers, etc. I guess they can be installed at any time, but it just seems odd.

Speaking of lighting, the old, dim mercury vapor lights are still present in the entryways as well as the overhang around the front of the store.

Perhaps lighting will be the very last thing addressed?
At the Texas Kroger stores, the 8 foot T8 fixtures like the ones you mentioned have generally been retrofitted with LED tubes in center-store areas. However, along store perimeters, these have in some cases been replaced with the Kroger standard-issue 6 tube fixtures like you mentioned. Maybe something like this is going on where only the GM fixtures are being replaced?

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Re: Fred Meyer Remodels Continue

Post by Super S » January 30th, 2019, 6:35 pm

architect wrote:
January 29th, 2019, 8:19 pm


At the Texas Kroger stores, the 8 foot T8 fixtures like the ones you mentioned have generally been retrofitted with LED tubes in center-store areas. However, along store perimeters, these have in some cases been replaced with the Kroger standard-issue 6 tube fixtures like you mentioned. Maybe something like this is going on where only the GM fixtures are being replaced?
I haven't actually seen fixtures with 8 foot T8 tubes (which these are) being retrofitted. I have only seen fixtures with the 4 foot tubes being retrofitted to LED. In fact, I haven't seen many LED conversions which retain 8 foot tubes in existing fixtures.

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Re: Fred Meyer Remodels Continue

Post by Super S » February 28th, 2019, 10:40 am

The Longview Fred Meyer is now advertising its grand reopening. This article has a video of the inside at the end:

https://tdn.com/news/local/fred-meyer-u ... op-story-1

A few thoughts:

Good: wider grocery aisles, and a vastly improved grocery selection all around. Service departments were updated, new beer/wine coolers were added, produce department was expanded. Plus this store has installed new checkouts on the grocery end and has hired baggers which the store did not have previously (the article says that they previously had only 8 checkstands, grocery alone had more previously) They also did install more self checkouts. They also retained the existing light fixtures with new LED tubes, which actually looks ok now. As for non-grocery, they did retain electronics and also the garden shop remains. They did retain the ceramic tile flooring from the last remodel at the inside garden area. They also did finally install self checkouts on this end (more on this in a minute)Staffing: This store is well staffed and has some longtime employees including a couple that have been there since the 1970s.

Not so good: Floors: The usual polished concrete with all the nicks, patches, old tile marks, etc. common with all Kroger remodels. This in my opinion downgrades the whole store's appearance. Lighting: The LED conversion was finished on the grocery end but still in progress on the general merchandise end (which should have been finished BEFORE the grand reopening IMO) But the mixture of new fixtures on the GM side at the back of the store combined with existing fixtures (which overlap on some aisles) plus some aisles in sports/auto not having the rows directly over them now gives an impression that they ran out of money in the lighting budget for the remodel. Also, the higher suspended ceiling area in the center of the store, which used to be apparel, now houses a portion of apparel, health and beauty, and dairy. They went to the trouble of installing new spotlights over the cosmetics area, but took the covers off the recessed lights and left them off (despite the adjacent part of apparel getting new white covers on the existing fixtures) The missing covers cheapen the appearance. I will also add that they still did not change out any of the mercury vapor lighting in the entryways. GM checkouts: They retained the existing old design checkstands and installed self checkouts. But I have noticed on several occasions that in the evenings it is forced self checkout on this end. And the checkouts are laid out backwards, where the bagging area is as you enter and you have to start at the other end or deal with the machine freezing up. This was an oversight in installing them and needs to be redone. The paint and sporting goods counters are now gone, paint mixing is no longer offered.

My final impression is that they are focusing heavily on grocery, while trying to cut costs as much as they can on the GM side.

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Re: Fred Meyer Remodels Continue

Post by omnisuperstore » March 3rd, 2019, 8:01 pm

I am a huge fan of telephone systems and paging systems in stores.

I am curious, Kroger’s owns Marianos here in Chicago and they replaced Roundys rollout of Toshiba digital phones with Cisco IP sets. I see that Fred Meyer is still heavily invested in the ROLM telephone systems. This was a wise investment, these ROLM phones date to the mid 80s and are still quite reliable and durable. Are these being removed and replaced with Cisco?

Also curious if Fred Meyer stores utilize overhead paging? When I visited a few Fred Meyer stores out west I believe I did hear overhead paging occasionally, but it wasn’t so often it was annoying like the Marianos stores here in Chicagoland. The pages at Fred Meyer sounded professional and pleasant.

Thank you.

Joe

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Re: Fred Meyer Remodels Continue

Post by omnisuperstore » March 3rd, 2019, 8:18 pm

What I meant to say, does Fred Meyer still utilize overhead paging, like they used to.

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