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The crowd and balloons caused many drivers to slow down to check out what was going on May 4 during the ribbon-cutting ceremonies at the new Rite Aid location at U.S. Highway 285 and South Clarkson Street.The ribbon cutting was a big event for Englewood because the former fitness center building had been empty for more than 10 years. It was a more-than $6 million project to construct the 14,600-square-foot Rite Aid.“This is a great addition to our community,” Councilmember Linda Olson said during the ribbon cutting. “This area just sat empty for so long. We are so happy Rite Aid is here. We think it is a great location that is now part of our medical district.”Chris Viscardi of the Kentro Group said the firm had been working for quite awhile looking for a location for a new Rite Aid.“We like the location for Rite Aid because it was so near the two hospitals, Craig and Swedish,” he said. “It was also a good location because it was right on the highway and easily accessible.”He said the site presented some challenges. He said after demolition, the company had to have a sewer line and overhead power line moved before construction could begin. He said there were topographic challenges because the east side of the site followed the downhill angle of Clarkson.Yanni Bellis, a 1996 Englewood High School graduate, is a principal in the Kentro Group. He said he is pleased the company had the opportunity to complete a project that he feels will be an asset to the community where he lived for many years.The inside of the new store is bright and colorful.“This is a typical Rite Aid store,” store manager Tim Ramsey said. “We offer a wide variety of products, including personal hygiene items and convenience foods. We are open, ready to serve our customers and work to be good neighbors to the area and the community.”Susan Gann said she just moved to the neighborhood and took the opportunity to pick up a few things at the newly opened store.“This is a very nice store. I love that it is so bright and that the aisles are wide for easy shopping,” she said. “The store is well designed and a good addition to our neighborhood.”The store is open from 7 a.m. until 10 p.m. seven days a week. Pharmacy hours are 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Friday; 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturday; and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Sunday.
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