Update on the Windsor Terrace Walgreens

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There has been a new development in the struggle between Windsor Terrace residents and the much-reviled Walgreens that is due to open someday. We guess. Probably not for many more months. But, hunker down, because it’s coming! The Brooklyn Paper reports that Walgreens has announced that the store will “dedicate a ‘significant’ amount of space to fresh produce and meat — a promise that could involve sharing the building with a grocer, company officials say.”

“Significant,” you say? Well, that sounds vague! And, therefore, not really all that encouraging.

Walgreens’ spokesperson Robert Elfinger said, “All options are on the table.” Which, ok, that could be promising. After all, “all options” is an awful lot of options! But, still, this is very vague. And vague isn’t promising. Elfinger also claims that there are also “plans for the pharmacy [to] include a dairy and deli meat selection — but…no specifics about how much square footage the shop will dedicate to fresh food.” So, yeah. Still vague!

What does that even mean, really? Does that mean there will be a full aisle of an assortment of dairy products, ranging from different kinds of milk and yogurts to eggs and a variety of butter? Will there be Lurpak? We love Lurpak! European butter is all kinds of good.

Or does this mean that there will be one lonely refrigerator case with a few milk containers and a couple of packages of salami?

It could mean that too! Because Walgreens isn’t giving any specifics or doing anything other than making ambiguous promises about fresh food.

And the Windsor Terrace residents who have spent months organizing and protesting in an effort to guarantee that the neighborhood does not become a food desert aren’t buying this line of unclear rhetoric either. Residents claim that they have received “‘only stock answers’ to letters they sent Walgreens officials.” One Windsor Terrace resident, Ryan Lynch, said, “We’re looking for something that’s reflective of a full-service grocery store … not a glorified 7-Eleven. It would be more hopeful if [Walgreens] was working with the community.”

One Comment

  • As an active member of Green Beans, Not Walgreens I can assure you the fight is far from over and is still in full swing. You are correct that we are not buying what Walgreens is now saying which basically amounts to empty words. If anything, it is encouraging us that we are having a significant impact as a disruptive force into their business as usual attitude in Windsor Terrace. When official representatives from Walgreens decide to step up and meet with us, community leaders and elected officials and lay out their exact plans in writing, we at that point will decide if they are going far enough to meet the needs of our neighborhood. We certainly will not settle for anything even close to their Bay Ridge stor business model. We will not settle for a convenience store.
    We will rest when we have a full-blown grocery store with appropriate, necessary and healthy fresh food options.