A New Downtown Dallas Tom Thumb store opens Friday in a development called ‘The Union’ between Field Street and Harry Hines Boulevard.
Neighbors and Downtown Dallas boosters are exicited.
The store is near the American Airlines Center north of Woodall Rogers Freeway.
Instead of suburban style grocery store parking, this store has a large parking garage under the store.
But many customers in the urban neighborhood are expected to walk.
"That was good news for me and my family as well," said Ali Behseresht who lives in an apartment across the street from the new store.
He walks to and from his downtown job and now he can walk to the grocery store instead of driving.
"I think it’s a game changer," Behseresht said.
Kourtny Garrett said her business group, Downtown Dallas Inc, has been pushing many years to get a full service grocery store.
"We have been working almost 20 years in this chicken and egg scenario," Garrett said. "You have to have the services to support the residential development but then you also have to have the residents to support the market for a grocery store."
Garrett said there are now about 12,000 residents in Downtown Dallas and 70,000 within a 2 mile radius.
In 2006, the City of Dallas agreed to provide more than $1 million in incentives to open the Urban Market Grocery store downtown. At that time there were about 2,500 residents downtown. The Urban Market store failed, despite the city money.
The Tom Thumb store sought no incentives from the city.
"This signals that downtown has arrived," Garrett said.
The Union development also includes office space, apartments and restaurants.
Elias Hriestle, the manager of The Henry restaurant at The Union said a grocery store is good for the neighborhood.
"Everything so far is blooming so it’s moving in the right direction. We’re really excited to have that addition," he said.
Office tenants at The Union have been peeking through the Tom Thumb store windows, anxious to see what will be inside.
"A lot of flowers, Starbucks on this side, Deli on that side, so I think it will be good," said tenant Debra Caudill.
Tom Thumb plans another urban style grocery store just east of downtown Dallas on Live Oak Street near the Latino Cultural Center.
A Whole Foods store is also open further Uptown in Dallas on McKinney Avenue.