Pylon Sign Returns to Winn-Dixie

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dooneyt63
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Pylon Sign Returns to Winn-Dixie

Post by dooneyt63 » 05 Dec 2008 16:37

A Winn-Dixie store in downtown Jacksonville, FL is sporting a pylon sign. It's sort of a back to the future kind of look for a supermarket; much different that their recent bland designs. Photos are on the Supermarket News website's photo gallery today. This is also a departure from the new Florida look featuring lots of corniced stucco, arches, and sometimes clay tile. Most new retail in Florida adopts some variation of this look these days, and, of course, it all looks alike. This is sort of a "current store operations" kind of thing, but I thought the pylon would be more of a "history" topic.

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Re: Pylon Sign Returns to Winn-Dixie

Post by ajsanjua » 06 Dec 2008 01:23

The pylon itself, the high interior walls and the large air vents suggest that this may be one of their older stores, probably not an attempt at retro designing. But I am curious due to the store's location within Jacksonville - might this be their flagship store?

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Groceteria
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Re: Pylon Sign Returns to Winn-Dixie

Post by Groceteria » 06 Dec 2008 15:43

ajsanjua wrote:The pylon itself, the high interior walls and the large air vents suggest that this may be one of their older stores, probably not an attempt at retro designing.
I tend to agree. This looks like a converted older store. Nice remodeling, though.

http://supermarketnews.com/photogallery/winn_dixie/

Edric Floyd
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Re: Pylon Sign Returns to Winn-Dixie

Post by Edric Floyd » 08 Dec 2008 15:23

I don't remember seeing any Winn-Dixie store anywhere that had a pylon sign. And my earliest memories of Winn-Dixie stores dates to the very early 1970's with stores open at time that dated back into the 1940's (pre "winn-Dixie" as in dixie home or winn and lovett). Even some "quik chek" supermarkets from back then.

I do remember some winn-dixie's with very large, tall street/curb sinage that could remind someone of pylon signs. They were made of wood or concrete with the lighted lettering at the very top and some with a "w/d" logo in the middle and "the beef people" on a lower board of the sign. The sign was wider at the top than at the bottom, kinda like a slanted "V". I wish I could find even an abandoned example of such a sign but most were removed due to sign ordinances especially around Florida.

Anyway, the "new" store in the photos: The interior design is very much like the one in Americus Georgia that reopened this year. It replaced a 1990's vintage "marketplace" store that was destroyed in a tornado on March 1, 2007. It took a year and a half to clear that land and completely rebuild the shopping center and Winn-Dixie only operated a pharmacy out of a trailer during the rebuilding. Ironically, their 1970's vintage Winn-Dixie building across the street was the ONLY retail building in that neighborhood that escaped serious damage in that tornado. Only the "G" in the name of its current occupant (Goody's) came off.

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Re: Pylon Sign Returns to Winn-Dixie

Post by Edric Floyd » 08 Dec 2008 15:34

ajsanjua wrote:The pylon itself, the high interior walls and the large air vents suggest that this may be one of their older stores, probably not an attempt at retro designing. But I am curious due to the store's location within Jacksonville - might this be their flagship store?
This is probably a new market to serve recent residential development returning to Downtown Jacksonville simular to residential re-development (condos and lofts) returning to the downtown center of most large cities.

Publix has built many new stores with unique designs in downtown areas especially Atlanta, Fort Lauderdale and Orlando. These are stores with street side walk up entrances and some with rooftop parking. Winn-Dixie may be trying to catch up as usual. I don't remember their having a store in Downtown Jacksonville over the past 30 years or so.

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Re: Pylon Sign Returns to Winn-Dixie

Post by Groceteria » 08 Dec 2008 23:43

Edric Floyd wrote:I don't remember seeing any Winn-Dixie store anywhere that had a pylon sign.
Actually, they had at least one or two pylon stores in NC in the late 1950s (one in Raleigh, I know for sure), and predecessor Kwik-Check did some pylon stores in FL during the same period. That's not necessarily to say this store is one of those; the Kwik-Chek pylons were more angled and had openings.

This one may well be a new build, I guess, but it really does look like an older shopping center, and not just because of the pylon. Could it have been something other than a Winn-Dixie before?

EDIT:

Apparently , it is a remodel, but it looks like the facade may be new:

Progressive Grocer Link

wnetmacman
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Re: Pylon Sign Returns to Winn-Dixie

Post by wnetmacman » 09 Dec 2008 09:11

I went and looked at two things: Winn Dixie's website and Windows Live Local. There is a store at 777 Market St. in downtown Jacksonville. It has been there a while. When you look at the Bird's eye view, you see that they were in the process of remodeling to this design during the picture process of Live Local. It's not a new store, but it sure looks new, and it's one of the best remodeling jobs I've ever seen WD do. Usually they end up butchering the stores, as they did in my area when they rejoined the Deli to the Bakery in the Marketplace stores. I'm hoping that they survive here in Louisiana long enough to see these stores here, but I'm not keeping my hopes up. As of now, there are only 10-12 WD stores west of the Mississippi River. WD took a big hit here during the bankruptcy, and they haven't done much around here since.
Scott Greer

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Re: Pylon Sign Returns to Winn-Dixie

Post by Edric Floyd » 11 Dec 2008 00:35

If you do a search on Google Maps for the address then select the "Street View" you can see the Winn-Dixie behind a city bus stop.

The photo shows the old Winn-Dixie before renovations. It is a late 1970's vintage WD and a free standing store.


I actually remember this store from at least 20 years ago and I am surprised the older store remained open for so long. But as I mentioned before, Downtown J-ville is like many large urban areas with revitalized downtown with lots of residential options.

I might make a "detour" to the area to check things out as I do have a work assignment in Kingsland Georgia which is just across the state line and a short drive to Jacksonville.

Photos soon.

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