Brooklyn Needs Its Supermarkets, and Badly

It may not be Whole Foods, but…
It may not be Whole Foods, but… Photo: Petroleumjelliffe’s Flickr

Some of us who live in Brooklyn tend to think of our supermarkets more as burdens to be endured that boons to be appreciated. (If you ever looked in the meat aisle of the Ditmas Park Key Food, you’d know what we mean.) But let even a bad supermarket disappear, and you have a major blow to a community, as two stories in this week’s Brooklyn Paper show. Out in Bay Ridge, neighbors are petitioning against the closing of a Key Food on Third Avenue and 95th Street, which is slated to become a Walgreens. “We don’t need a pharmacy — we need a grocery store,” says one resident. “That property has been a grocery store for over 50 years, and it should stay a grocery store.” Meanwhile, over in Brooklyn Heights, a Gristedes closed by a fire is of such vital importance to the neighborhood that construction crews are working around the clock to get the place back online. “I hate dragging heavy stuff like a gallon of milk from Montague Street,” says a local. You can do without a dry cleaner, and you can do without a cool bar, but live somewhere where there’s no supermarket, and you’re in a tough spot, FreshDirect or no.

Key Food Fight
Gristedes Will Reopen [Brooklyn Paper]