A website affiliated with Crain's Chicago Business Friday cited unnamed real estate sources as saying that the former Dominick's on Lake-Cook Road in Buffalo Grove would soon be converted by Elgin-based Butera Market into a Piggly Wiggly.
Dominick's and Butera Market officials were silent on the matter Friday, while Buffalo Grove Deputy Village Manager Jenny Maltas said she'd neither seen nor heard any evidence of such a transaction.
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Maltas added that rumors have been flying about the possibility of a Butera Market opening in the Dominick's site, as the Butera family owns the balance of the Chase Plaza in which Dominick's self-owned building is located.
"It's basically all conjecture," she said.
Maltas added that Dominick's officials have been difficult to reach and have only ever commented about the sale of their former sites after a contract has been signed.
Lynn Miller, Dominick's director of real estate, did not return calls seeking comment Friday. And Paul Butera Sr., the president and sole spokesman for Butera Market, was unavailable for comment, according to company representatives.
Barrington-based grocery industry consultant Willard Bishop said the return of the Piggly Wiggly brand to the area would be a good story, but he had no knowledge whether it was.
Among the crowd of chains and independent grocery stores now moving into the market, Dominick's and Jewel Foods once dominated, the return of a more small-town brand like Piggly Wiggly would evoke both novelty and nostalgia, Bishop said.
"I think it is a way to stand out from the crowd," he added. "Where we are today, it may be that the novelty is as important as what the equity is."
In the new competitive environment, each trip a grocery store earns is a victory, and curiosity may be one way to generate such a trip, Bishop said.
Meanwhile, Buffalo Grove's two other vacant Dominick's have already found new tenants, Maltas said.
A grand opening for the new Garden Fresh Market in the former Dominick's on Buffalo Grove Road at Dundee Road hasn't been announced yet, but is probably right around the corner, she said. The opening of a new Mariano's on Half Day Road at Buffalo Grove Road is likely at least six to eight weeks off, she added.