List of Detroit-area A&P stores from 1983

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List of Detroit-area A&P stores from 1983

Post by Andrew T. » 10 Dec 2016 13:35

While rifling through old newspapers for research, I was pleased this week to uncover a list of A&P stores that operated in the Detroit area, from the Northville Record of June 29, 1983!
ap-detroit-83a.png
I don't know if this is a complete list of stores. Ann Arbor and Ypsilanti are conspicuous by their absence; although Saline (south of Ann Arbor) is listed. Also left unlisted are the stores in Howell and Taylor I photographed during my visit to Michigan last summer: Maybe they had closed before 1983 in A&P's constant bouts of pruning and contraction; maybe not.

42 stores are listed. Of the buildings that survive today, 14 or 15 are centennials. Most of the others are generic post-centennial and shopping-center stores, usually with some kind of mansard and a protruding atrium with entrances at either end. If any archaic pre-1960s downtown stores were still operating in 1983, they're not listed here.

The addresses don't seem to be listed on the page in any particular order, but I've listed them alphabetically here along with their present-day dispositions. 9 or 10 of these still house food stores today. Enjoy:

* 1025 St. Clair River, Algonac, MI
Appears to have been razed and replaced by a CVS.

* 201 3rd St, Belleville, MI
Centennial-roof store with a severely-disguised facade. Now a medical practice.

* 2624 W. 11 Mile, Berkley, MI
Centennial-roof store, now remodeled and vacant. The front gable is offset to the far-right end of the facade, which looks very strange...surely they didn't build it that way?

* 555 Adams, Birmingham, MI
Centennial-roof store, with half the original roofline now obscured. Vacant?

* 3600 W. Maple, Birmingham, MI
Expanded and renovated beyond recognition, still selling groceries as a Kroger. An ambiguous semblance of a centennial roof is visible in aerial images.

* 8483 (or 6483?) W. Grand River, Brighton, MI
I can't place this one. The Grand River address numbers seem to jump from the 700s to the 8700s as the road passes over South Ore Creek.

* 7215 E. 10 Mile, Center Line, MI
Generic shopping-center store. Now ABC Warehouse electronics.

* 5785 Ortonville, Clarkston, MI

Shopping-center location. Possibly now a Rite Aid; though it may have been rebuilt.

* 13250 Ford Rd, Dearborn, MI
Now the site of a CVS, that may or may not be housed in a remodel of the original building.

* 27335 W. Warren, Dearborn, MI
Centennial-roof store that was part of a shopping center. Now evidently vacant.

* 21025 Ann Arbor Trail, Dearborn Heights, MI
Unclear where to place this one; the address now resolves to a residential neighborhood. Misprint?

* 15061 Houston-Whittier, Detroit, MI
Unusual centennial-roof store with a smaller profile and narrow front facade, still selling groceries as a Save-a-Lot food store.

* 5858 W. Vernor, Detroit, MI

Centennial-roof store (missing its front gable), still selling groceries as a Ryan's Foods store.

* 23300 Farmington Rd, Farmington, MI

Centennial-roof store that was part of a shopping center. Now houses the Fresh Thyme farmer's market, with the centennial roof completely hidden from view.

* 14510 Second, Highland Park, MI

Centennial-roof store with intact cupola. Now the George Washington Carver Academy, with a long and narrow annex built in front of the store where part of the parking lot used to be (and yet another annex in the rear).

* 605 N. Cedar, Imlay City, MI

Generic shopping-center store (albeit with stone accents on the facade). Now a Goodwill thrift store.

* 1101 Lapeer Rd, Lake Orion, MI

Generic store paired with a late 1970s-era Kmart, still selling groceries as a Hollywood Market.

* 2400 W. Fort St, Lincoln Park, MI

Razed and replaced by a new CVS store.

* 29583 W. 5 Mile, Livonia, MI

Generic 1970s store. Now subdivided.

* 31020 John R, Madison Heights, MI

Razed and replaced by a Sam's Club.

* 42475 W. 7 Mile Rd, Northville, MI

Generic 1970s store. This is the one store on the list I have a memory of shopping inside. Now it stands vacant, much like the psychiatric hospital it sits down the street from.

* 41840 W. 10 Mile Rd, Novi, MI

Generic 1970s store, still selling groceries as a Busch's Fresh Food Market.

* 22150 Coolidge Rd, Oak Park, MI

Shopping-center store (likely expanded and renovated beyond recognition), still selling groceries as a Glory Supermarket.

* 3232 Orchard Lake Rd, Orchard Lake, MI

Centennial-roof store that was part of a shopping center. Now a Salvation Army thrift store.

* 775 Baldwin, Pontiac, MI

Centennial-roof store with intact cupola. Now a Sav-Plus pharmacy.

* 5975 Highland Rd, Pontiac, MI

Evidently razed and replaced by a new Kroger.

* 1639 Garfield, Port Huron, MI

Centennial-roof store with intact cupola, tucked out of the way behind a shopping center. Now evidently vacant.

* 729 Howard, Port Huron, MI

Centennial-roof store. Now a Salvation Army thrift store.

* 19020 Fort St, Riverview, MI

Generic 1970s store, now subdivided.

* 637 Main St, Rochester, MI

Appears to have been razed and replaced by a salon or massage parlor.

* 66030 Van Dyke, Romeo, MI

Centennial-roof store. Now Tractor Supply Co.

* 465 W. Michigan, Saline, MI

Unclear where to place this; Google thinks it's in a lake.

* 25281 Telegraph Rd, Southfield, MI

Shopping-center store. May still be selling groceries as an Imperial Your Neighborhood Market (sic); though I suspect the configuration of the center has changed.

* 11055 Allen Rd, Southgate, MI

Centennial-roof store, still reasonably intact. Now houses the Trentwood Farms farmer's market, which is almost like a supermarket.

* 24001 Harper, St. Clair Stores, MI

Razed and replaced by a new shopping center.

* 32201 Harper, St. Clair Shores, MI

Evidently razed and replaced by a new Walgreens.

* 35170 Dodge Park, Sterling Heights, MI

Generic shopping-center store. Now a Salvation Army thrift store.

* 23135 Ecorse Rd, Taylor, MI

Generic shopping-center store. Now Ace Hardware.

* 5047 Rochester Rd, Troy, MI

Store in a shopping center with decorative stone walls; now a boxing club (if it's the south anchor as I suspect). A real estate link dates the site to 1969.

* 1154 E. West Maple, Walled Lake, MI

Generic shopping-center store, now Harbor Freight Tools.

* 35400 E. Michigan Ave, Wayne, MI

Very late 1970s-looking store with diagonal wood slats on the facade, still selling groceries as a Fresh Choice Food Center. I wonder if this was a standard A&P design?

* 132 Merriman, Westland, MI
Generic 1970s store. Now subdivided with a new Kroger next door.
"The pale pastels which have been featured in most food stores during the past 20 years are no longer in tune with the mood of the 1970s."
Andrew Turnbull

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Re: List of Detroit-area A&P stores from 1983

Post by pseudo3d » 10 Dec 2016 15:35

So, none of these survived into the Farmer Jack era? A newspaper article reveals that when A&P bought Farmer Jack, it wasn't to re-enter a market they had abandoned years prior?

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Re: List of Detroit-area A&P stores from 1983

Post by Andrew T. » 10 Dec 2016 21:13

pseudo3d wrote:So, none of these survived into the Farmer Jack era?
I'm not sure what you see that implies that. Some of these locations no-doubt survived into the Farmer Jack era. The Lincoln Park store is even listed on this site as surviving till 2007.

When A&P bought Farmer Jack, it was to bolster its existing competitive standing in Michigan...not to re-enter a vacated territory. Also, the consolidation of stores under the Farmer Jack banner didn't happen overnight: The acquisition happened in 1989, and I can find newspaper references to "Farmer Jack and A&P" coexisting as late as 1994.
"The pale pastels which have been featured in most food stores during the past 20 years are no longer in tune with the mood of the 1970s."
Andrew Turnbull

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Re: List of Detroit-area A&P stores from 1983

Post by Groceteria » 10 Dec 2016 22:38

Houston-Whittier looks like a retrofit. They converted to a lot of stores to the centennial look after it was introduced, and they often stand out by being narrower and deeper.

The satellite view of the Birmingham store (now Kroger) makes it look like kind of a train wreck of expansions. I'd like to see that one in person.

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Re: List of Detroit-area A&P stores from 1983

Post by Groceteria » 10 Dec 2016 22:43

I suspect Saline was actually 465 EAST Michigan. There's an older looking shopping center at that address. Likely a typo in the ad.

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Re: List of Detroit-area A&P stores from 1983

Post by Andrew T. » 11 Dec 2016 01:25

Groceteria wrote:I suspect Saline was actually 465 EAST Michigan. There's an older looking shopping center at that address. Likely a typo in the ad.
I think you're right. The A&P is now a thrift store if it was the large tenant on the far end; though a tenant elsewhere in the center seems to have inherited the 465 address number. These things happen.

As for Brighton, I just noticed that a building with a centennial roof is down the street at the present-day address of 106 W. Grand River. Not sure how the phototypesetter could have gotten 8483 (or 6483?) from that, so maybe the street grid in that 'burb was renumbered at some point.
"The pale pastels which have been featured in most food stores during the past 20 years are no longer in tune with the mood of the 1970s."
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Re: List of Detroit-area A&P stores from 1983

Post by pseudo3d » 11 Dec 2016 03:09

Andrew T. wrote:
pseudo3d wrote:So, none of these survived into the Farmer Jack era?
I'm not sure what you see that implies that. Some of these locations no-doubt survived into the Farmer Jack era. The Lincoln Park store is even listed on this site as surviving till 2007.

When A&P bought Farmer Jack, it was to bolster its existing competitive standing in Michigan...not to re-enter a vacated territory. Also, the consolidation of stores under the Farmer Jack banner didn't happen overnight: The acquisition happened in 1989, and I can find newspaper references to "Farmer Jack and A&P" coexisting as late as 1994.
It looked like the stores listed implied that none of them survived. But looking over, I do see at least one, the Novi store became a Farmer Jack and survived until the chain's end in 2007. Really surprised that A&P lasted as long as Detroit as they did, much like they did New Orleans (New Orleans also largely changed the store's name, and a "Sav-a-Center" store even got A&P Fresh 1.0, something I'm sure Farmer Jack did not get). A&P in New Orleans had a store operated since the early 1930s that it kept (as an A&P, no less) until 2007. How long was A&P in Detroit, and which city got A&P first?

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Re: List of Detroit-area A&P stores from 1983

Post by jamiel » 11 Dec 2016 11:22

Great stuff!

Summer of '84 and '85 I worked for a rack jobber while in college (garden seeds) and would drive a van around inventorying and removing the garden seed racks from stores. I was assigned to Farmer Jack and Franks Nursery and Crafts, although a colleague handled the A&P stores.

A couple comments:

555 Adams--believe this is in a strip center just east of DT Birmingham. Given the area (very affluent suburban old-money), no problem with vacancies...there's a Rite Aid and Ace Hardware in the center.

3600 W Maple, Birmingham--believe this became a Farmer Jack Food Emporium before being absorbed by Kroger.

Brighton--this store was in-line in the shopping center which backs up to I-96 (probably a K-Mart Foods when built early 70s). K-Mart became a Sears Essentials before closing completely.

W. Vernor---believe this was the last A&P branded store in the city of Detroit. Stable Mexican neighborhood

Oak Park--yes, you have it right...the shopping center is pretty unrecognizable (in those days it had a Sanders ice cream parlor among other things). Neighborhood has turned over so Glory (which has several Detroit locations) fits the demographic, although they attempted another store a mile north (10 mile/Coolidge--former Farmer Jack built early 90s which catered to the Jewish community with kosher deli and fresh meat) and failed badly (pretty clear demographic mismatch).

Telegraph/Southfield--I recall that Imperial store as being a Farmer Jack--but don't have much recollection of where there was an A&P in that area.

I note there are a couple of Michigan area A&Ps of this vintage which I know of:

East Lansing (Grand River/Hagadorn)--Northwood shopping center--was a small very early 60s Centennial in a strip center along with a Cunningham's Drug Store. Survived on the student population as it was adjacent to the east Michigan State campus. Now a doctor's office, I believe. At that time, Meijer was about 3 miles east in Okemos and if you were doing "big shopping" you'd just take the bus out there. There was a Kroger and Eberhard in Frandor (west campus) and Spartan Shop-Rite (Spartan store, duh) for south campus.

Charlotte (in a generic strip center right off of temporary I-69). I was at Michigan State 1981-1985, and heading back to school I-69 wasn't finished yet between Charlotte and the west side of Lansing, so you'd be shunted off on to the surface street. I'd stop here to pick up milk etc on my way back to campus.

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Re: List of Detroit-area A&P stores from 1983

Post by pseudo3d » 07 Feb 2017 16:43

When A&P bought Farmer Jack, it did divest a few stores to Great Scott! [http://www.upi.com/Archives/1989/01/25/ ... 601707600/], are any of them still extant as Kroger stores?

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Re: List of Detroit-area A&P stores from 1983

Post by detroitish » 12 Feb 2017 13:10

Image

Although not a clear and up close shot I believe that this is the Highland Rd. A&P in Pontiac. The photo was taken during a building re-location in 1964.

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Re: List of Detroit-area A&P stores from 1983

Post by TenPoundHammer » 30 Aug 2017 17:14

8483 (or 6483?) W. Grand River, Brighton, MI
I can't place this one. The Grand River address numbers seem to jump from the 700s to the 8700s as the road passes over South Ore Creek.
This store was in the Brighton Mall. I believe Farmer Jack razed and rebuilt it in the 1990s when the shopping center was rebuilt. It's now a Marshalls.
465 W. Michigan, Saline, MI
Unclear where to place this; Google thinks it's in a lake.
Change your west to east and you have it. The Salvation Army store is definitely the former A&P.
35400 E. Michigan Ave, Wayne, MI
Very late 1970s-looking store with diagonal wood slats on the facade, still selling groceries as a Fresh Choice Food Center. I wonder if this was a standard A&P design?
This store closed in the early 80s and is listed as a Big Lots in 1988. It went back to being a grocery store sometime in the 90s, and one of the later tenants may have refurbished it.

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