Bloomington city leaders are taking action to address a food desert in the west side of the city.
The West Market Street Council signed, Friday, an agreement to purchase a building on West Market Street. There they hope to establish a non profit grocery store.
“The worst thing that can happen to west Bloomington is to start something and then not have it come through. That’s demoralizing,” said Laurie Bell, said Project Coordinator at West Market Street Council.
That’s why Bell and the rest of the West Market Street Council wouldn’t stop until they took action to address food scarcity in west Bloomington. Members have agreed to buy a property at 912 West Market Street, where they want to establish the non-profit grocery store.
“Whether you want to buy groceries or purchase any other products and services, west Bloomington residents have to travel out of the neighborhood to spend their money elsewhere. Without essential stores and businesses in the neighborhood, no one in west Bloomington can shop local,” said Arthur Haynes, president of West Market Street Council.
Right now the only business in the plaza is Rosy’s Mexican Grill which won’t be going anywhere. Leaders encourage other communities to keep fighting food insecurity.
“A lot of times you can get distracted and the passion gets overshadowed by obstacles or whatever it may be so my advice would be, don’t forget the passion that you started off with. Try to hold on to that passion and see it through till the end,” said Haynes.
If all goes well, people could also see an ice cream shop and a yoga studio in the plaza.
In the meantime, the council will look for ways to secure financing for the redevelopment. They will also be seeking community input throughout this time.