DealPoint Merrill to Convert Former Cleveland Grocery Store to CubeSmart Self-Storage

Update 4/4/18 – The Cleveland Board of Zoning Appeals was expected to approve several variances on Monday that are necessary for DealPoint’s Lorain Avenue self-storage proposal to move forward. In addition to the converted grocery store and new restaurant, the project will include three new storage buildings behind the old Giant Eagle structure, according to company attorney Ken Fisher. If approved, construction will begin this summer, the source reported.

The storage capacity inside the former market will essentially double with the addition of a second floor. The structure will house climate-controlled spaces.

The project is likely to pass because the property owner previously refused to work with another grocer, and the city would like the property back in use, according to councilmember Brian Kazy. The store has been vacant since 2016.

"The dirty bird is known to let properties sit empty for years," Kazy told the source. "While a proposed CubeSmart is good only for CubeSmart, DealPoint has agreed to simultaneously develop a 7,000-square-foot retail building on the Lorain frontage so it will create some jobs."

The developer is under contract to acquire the former Giant Eagle property from an affiliate of the grocer. An earlier report suggested DealPoint already owns the property, but the latest information indicates the cost of the development will be $14 million, not the previously reported property purchase price.


3/22/18 – DealPoint Merrill LLC, a real estate development and property-management firm, is set to convert a former Giant Eagle grocery store to self-storage in Cleveland. Real estate investment trust CubeSmart is slated to move into the 56,000-square foot building once complete. The city-supported project on Lorain Avenue near W. 130th Street also includes a restaurant to be built in front of the storage facility, according to the source. Construction is scheduled to begin in June with completion expected in December.

DealPoint acquired the property for $14 million. Though the grocery store closed about a year ago, Cleveland officials have designated the area an urban-form overlay district, with the intent of spurring retail development and making Lorain Avenue more pedestrian-friendly, the source reported.

“I was hoping it was gonna be a grocery store, but I'm glad it's going to be something that's useful to the neighborhood and make it pretty again,” resident Laura Brown told the source, “Because I've lived here my whole life, and I don't plan on leaving.”

DealPoint is also converting a former Macy’s store to self-storage in Richmond Heights, Ohio. Other recent supermarket conversions by the developer include a Scott’s Food Store in Fort Wayne, Ind., and a Shaw’s in New Britain, Conn. The Richmond Heights and Fort Wayne projects will also be branded under CubeSmart.

CubeSmart owns or manages 936 self-storage facilities across the United States. Its operating portfolio comprises 63.4 million square feet.

DealPoint Merrill is a subsidiary of The Merrill Group of Cos., a privately held real estate development and property-management firm that has been in business since 1985. Merrill Group manages more than 2 million square feet in office and retail assets nationwide. Based in Los Angeles, DealPoint Merrill also has a strategic partnership with real estate firm Sperry Van Ness LLC for co-investment opportunities and development services.

Source:
Crain’s Cleveland Business, Empty Cleveland Supermarket Is Target of $14M Project
Cleveland 19 News, Redevelopment Plans for Defunct Giant Eagle Offers New Hope for Cleveland Neighborhood

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