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Ryan: Efforts Continue for North Side Grocery Store

Bob Joseph/WNBF News

Binghamton mayor Matthew Ryan says efforts are continuing to bring a grocery store to the city’s North Side.

Speaking Tuesday on WNBF Radio’s Binghamton Now program, Ryan said the concept is still “very much being pursued.”

The mayor said he wouldn’t say much more about the long-running issue until there was something definitive to announce.

Ryan said he believed “some mistakes were made” with earlier announcements that turned out to be premature.

City officials had hoped a developer would open a Sav-A-Lot store at the former site of a McDonald’s restaurant on West State Street.

The mayor said the prospective developer backed out because of financing issues.

Ryan said “different people” have expressed interest, although he declined to provide any specifics.

Councilwoman Lea Webb had been pushing to address the need for a supermarket on the North Side. Her efforts were recognized in a feature in Oprah Winfrey’s magazine.

That story suggested the grocery store plan was a virtual certainty, noting the “store is expected to open in spring 2010.”

On Tuesday’s program, Ryan explained his reluctance to say much about the hoped-for store: “People’s hopes shouldn’t be raised and then dashed.” The mayor said he wanted to have “something solid” before he made any announcement.

The North Side neighborhood has been without a full-service supermarket since a Grand Union store in the Binghamton Plaza closed about two decades ago.

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