January 4, 2017
Ms. Laura Karet
Chief Executive Officer
101 Kappa Drive
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 15238
Dear Ms. Karet:
The City of Cleveland has been a partner with Giant Eagle over the years, working with the development of new grocery stores and Get-Go gas stations within the City limits. Therefore, it is with great disappointment that we learned of the closing of two stores and a Get-Go gas station through the media. The closing of the store at East 116th Street and Buckeye Road marks the end of Giant Eagle on the east side of Cleveland and the two closures mean that there are only two Giant Eagle stores left in a community of nearly 400,000 people. These stores provided access to fresh foods and a pharmacy for our residents, many of whom are elderly and rely on public transportation. The closure of these stores would require a customer to travel another several miles on the east or west side to one of your stores by car.
We also learned that over 120 jobs are at risk. We have been provided no information on whether these employees have been offered positions at other stores and we have received many calls today from concerned employees who also just learned that they will be without a job in thirty to sixty days. The closing of pharmacies on January 14, 2017 means that customers have just ten (10) days to transfer prescriptions, placing a hardship on many of our seniors and those with disabilities for whom this process can be very difficult.
We are also concerned that if these stores remain closed that the remaining term of the lease will prevent other grocery stores from leasing at these locations, to limit competition which was done when Giant Eagle moved from Lorain Avenue to the newer West 117th store. These vacant stores are a negative influence on our community and can affect other leases for nearby retail.
While your lack of notification gave us no opportunity to understand your situation and discuss ways the City of Cleveland might help retain these stores, we remain available to discuss the situation and hope that we can work together. Please reach out to my Chief of Government & International Affairs, Valarie J. McCall at 664-3544 or via email at email@example.com.
Frank G. Jackson
Cc: Cleveland City Council Members, City of Cleveland
Ken Silliman, Chief of Staff, City of Cleveland
Valarie J. McCall, Chief of Government & International Affairs, City of Cleveland
Tracey Nichols, Chief of Economic Development, City of Cleveland
Ed Rybka, Chief of Regional Development, City of Cleveland