After reviewing the project plans, city council members asked the city attorney to draft a resolution approving the development stage plan of the ALDI grocery store.
This motion comes at the heels of a 60 day application review deadline set for Sept. 9. Earlier this summer, ALDI submitted plans to build on three acres in the northwest quadrant of Grove Circle North and Maple Grove Parkway.
Prior to the city council meeting, the Maple Grove Planning Commission approved recommending ALDI’s PUD concept and development stage plan, but asked ALDI to work with city staff to make a few changes to the design of the building, including the addition of more windows to the store’s west side.
Though the Maple Grove City Council ultimately approved the plans, their motion to direct the city attorney to draft a resolution did not come without questions.
Maple Grove City Council Member Karen Jaeger had immediate concerns about the route that delivery trucks would use for the proposed store. With one entrance and one exit, store drawings showed trucks sharing the entrance with customers. Dick Edwards, Maple Grove Director of Community Development, assured Jaeger that deliveries were only made during “off hours,” so a shared entrance wouldn’t be an issue.
City Council Member LeAnn Sargent questioned the location choice of the proposed ALDI. Sargent expressed concern for the other businesses, like Target, that have already established a presence in the community.
“It seems like there are other parts of the city, like the southwest portion, that might be a better fit,” Sargent said. “I understand [ALDI] is unique, but I have concerns for the best use of that property.”
Rainbow Foods, Walmart, Sam’s Club and Target are within a five mile radius of the proposed ALDI location.
“We are comfortable being located near our competitors,” Stemmons answered. “We are not taking away from other retailers. We are just providing another option for customers.”
ALDI is a discount grocery chain that currently operates more than 1,000 stores in the United States, 28 of which are in Minnesota. The grocery chain is unique in that 95 percent of available products are sold exclusively in ALDI stores and under the ALDI brand name.
Once a resolution is drafted, Stemmons’ team will be on their way to breaking ground in the late spring or fall of 2012.