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Asian-American Grocer To Open First Arizona Store In Mesa

Nick Blumberg/KJZZ
Groceries in a cart.

A New-Jersey based company will fill the space left behind after Albertsons closed a store in west Mesa a few years ago. Mesa city officials say the area has become a hub for the Asian retail market.

H Mart will be the latest grocer to set up shop on the corner of Main Street and Dobson Road. It’s just across from the Mekong Plaza which features a supermarket, restaurants and shops.  

Mesa’s Economic Development Director Bill Jabjiniak welcomes the company’s opening.

“We’re developing a cultural center,” Jabjiniak said. 

While H Mart focuses on Korean foods, Jabjiniak said it will include a variety of Asian, Hispanic and American products. The 63,000 square foot building could also house a pharmacy, hair salon and up to seven restaurants.

“It’s an anchor to a shopping center and that will spur some additional interest in being in that area,” Jabjiniak said. There will be a lot of traffic coming to this area and you’ll see people travel from a greater distance. This is not just a neighborhood store.”

“The city and community have been incredibly positive and we look forward to our 13th state opening,” H Mart President Brian Kwon said.

Jabjiniak says H Mart will spend more than $7 million dollars in renovations for its first Arizona location. It’s expected to open next summer and employ about 100 hundred people.

According to the company’s website, H Mart (short for Han Ah Reum which means "one arm full" in Korean) opened its first store in Queens, New York in 1982. Today, it has 52 stores and employs more than 3,500 people.

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As a senior field correspondent, Christina Estes focuses on stories that impact our economy, your wallet and public policy.