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Publix on Memorial Drive in Stone Mountain To Close Jan. 9

A spokeswoman told Patch the store in the Memorial Bend shopping center has been under-performing for years.

Updated 1/9/12: The Publix store is closing at 7 p.m., Jan. 9, not 10 p.m. as was originally stated by Publix.

After 17 years in business, the Publix supermarket in the Memorial Bend shopping center on Memorial Drive is closing.

"We have made plans to close the Memorial Drive store on January 9 at 10 p.m., at the end of business that day, because the store has been for quite some time under-performing," said Brenda Reid, media and community relations manager for Publix.

"Our management team has been notified and all interested parties who would like to continue working with Publix will be given the opportunity to transfer to another store," Reid said.

Updated 12/4: Brenda Reid, media and community relations manager for Publix, told Patch this week that the company's decision was not because of the new Walmart. "This [under-performing] has been going on for several years," she said.

The store, which opened in 1995, has 85 associates, she said.

"It's a tragedy that we're losing a good, quality grocery store, said Vernell Kimbrough, a resident of nearby Hearthstone and president of the Hearthstone Community Club."Hopefully there will be another anchor that recognizes the potential in this neighborhood."

"It's like they're leaving without warning," he said.

After getting confirmation about the closing, Kimbrough alerted residents via e-mail on Friday.

In an e-mail to several DeKalb County commissioners and CEO Burrell Ellis, resident Jan Dunaway, board member of the grassroots community group Pride Rings in Stone Mountain, expressed concern about how the , may have impacted Publix's decision:

This loss will leave Memorial Drive with NO grocery stores from Columbia Drive to North Hairston which will have a great impact for those without transportation.  Memorial Drive will also have another large empty store which is just what we need.  I do not consider the opening of one store economic development if it forces the closure of others.  What are the County and our elected officials doing to prevent other businesses from leaving? Is the County having regular conversation with Kroger or Office Depot to determine their long term plans and asking what can be done to maintain our existing businesses?

If the community cannot support a Publix, will the community be able to support a Walmart?  It appears that Walmart puts more than just Mom and Pop stores at risk so we need to be proactive in preventing the demise of other stores along our continuing to decline corridor.

For updates to this story, check back with Patch, "like" us on Facebook, and follow us on Twitter.

What do you think about the Memorial Drive Publix closing? Tell us in the comments section below.

Joe Bentley January 13, 2013 at 02:01 AM
Laura, you are absolutely right! I've heard too many local folks, who live along the Memorial Drive Corridor, say that they shop near their places of work or as Mr. Kenfal above said, at The Perimeter - and then complain that the businesses on Memorial Drive are leaving. WE need to shop in OUR community. I buy everything I need as locally as possible, and our neighborhood (Dunaire) has organized a monthly "Dunaire Dines Out" event to support local restaurants. If you aren't supporting your community businesses, you have no right to complain when your community businesses abandon you.
JJ January 14, 2013 at 04:50 PM
I think Aldi would be a good fit.....
Peach January 14, 2013 at 07:35 PM
I agree. Aldi's fits the neighborhood, prices are low, and they carry a lot of everything. Their prices continue to beat all the others, including walmart. One problem is that their stores are pretty small and would not fit the space left by Publix.
Leslie Johnson January 14, 2013 at 09:08 PM
That's what I was thinking, Peach -- they'd have to make that space way smaller for Aldi's.
Helena clemons January 15, 2013 at 01:35 AM
I recommend an Aldi store, I think a lot of people loved shopping at sav a lot. Aldi is jus a higher end version. They have great products, a clean store and great prices. Which will be good for this demographic. I ran to sav a lot all the time and I always do my big shopping at Aldi

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