Seward Coop Grand Opening
I was thrilled to attend the "vine-cutting" for the new Seward Coop at 29th and Riverside this morning. Today was the culmination of years of hard work going back to 2006 on the part of Coop staff, Seward Redesign, Seward Neighborhood Group, the neighborhood volunteer activists who participated in the Riverside Market Task Force and Franklin Avenue Planning process, and my office. My staff and I have helped shepherd this incredibly important redevelopment through City regulatory processes on topics such as the location of the alley, parking on Franklin, and getting the City's matching funds for the Seward-themed bike racks out front. It's extremely gratifying to see everyone's hard work pay off.
I'm also excited that such an improved amenity has brought life back to this signficant meeting or two improtant commercial corridors: Riverside Ave. and Franklin Ave. Now be located in the heart of Seward, the Coop has increased its hours from 9am-9pm daily to 8am-10pm daily. The new deli is four times as big as in the previous store. The second floor will offer community and educational space. The east side of the building will feature some great outdoor patio seating for warmer weather.
Lastly, it's wonderful to see such a community-owned, cooperatively run, green building open up in the Ward. The project manager believes the new store is on track to be certified LEED Gold. The new bike racks along Franklin will put sustainable transportation front and center, while tying the store in with the rest of the neighborhood (other businesses will start installing the same style of rack later this spring).
All in all, it's a great project that will be fantastic for the neighborhood and the entire City. I'm grateful for having been given the opportunity to help and congratulate all those who put so much time and effort into making this happen.
Like Dan Nordley said in his outstanding comments at the opening, "cooperation works."