Mayor touts neighborhood improvements despite ‘discouraging’ Rite Aid closure: Your Stories

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SYRACUSE, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) – Mayor Ben Walsh says he’s not too proud to pick up the phone and pitch to businesses the vacant Rite Aids in Syracuse.

In June, the Rite Aid at the intersection of Grant Boulevard and Butternut Street will close. Walgreens purchased 2,000 Rite Aids last summer, including the three being closed.

Last December, the Rite Aid at the corner of Fayette and Salina Streets closed in Downtown Syracuse.

Both stores were anchor tenants of their respective neighborhoods. Mayor Walsh wants both buildings to not go too long without a productive business inside.

At the Northside location, he’ll promote the investment already made. Walsh referenced a $200,000 grant that funded facade improvements to nearby Peppino’s, Leah and Steigerwald’s and Change of Pace tavern.

Next, Butternut Street will benefit from $6 million in road repairs. Because of the city’s “dig once” strategy, those renovations come with new water and sewer lines underneath.

Walsh says, “I think, the big picture, there’s positive momentum. But it doesn’t make decisions like this any less discouraging or frustrating.”

Downtown, Walsh says it’s only a matter of time before Rite Aid gets replaced with something else. He says some developers are interested in the vacant property.

Outside of Syracuse, two other Rite Aids in Central New York will get shut down by Walgreens.

  • ShoppingTown Mall, 3649 Erie Blvd., DeWitt
    Pharmacy: June 10 at 5 pm
    Store: June 24
  • 703 Old Liverpool Road, Salina
    Pharmacy: June 10
    Store: June 26
  • 1900 Grant Boulevard, Syracuse
    Pharmacy: June 12
    Store: June 26

A spokesperson for Rite Aid said that three non-Walgreen’s owned stores will remain open in Onondaga County: 

  1. 519 Butternut Street, Syracuse
  2. 1820 Teall Avenue, Syracuse 
  3. 5380 W. Taft Road, North Syracuse

This story started with you. Submit questions to the Your Stories team by calling 315-446-9900 or email YourStories@LocalSYR.com. Tweet @AndrewDonovan using #YourStories.

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