Neighbors express frustration over closure of Portland Ave. Rite Aid

ROCHESTER, NY The Rite Aid on Portland Avenue is set to close on May 10. It’s less than a week away.

The company said the decision comes after reviewing a number of factors, such as business conditions and store performance.

When you drive past, you will notice that the store has been through a lot. The front doors are clad in plywood, and neighbors told News10NBC that many shelves are often bare.

“It’s sad because we have to go further out now,” said one family in the neighborhood. “And this is our favorite Rite Aid. We have to go to Family Dollar now.”

“I’m shocked but not surprised,” said shopper Sherman Dickerson. “I guess they couldn̵[ads1]7;t survive the shoplifting. If you take a walk around the store, all the shelves are empty. The shoplifters come in, they know they can’t be touched. The poor shop cannot survive.”

It’s a staple of the neighborhood, according to Rochester Mayor Malik Evans.

“We know from the foot traffic that happens there that we don’t think it’s a wise decision,” Evans said of the closure. – There is a lot of traffic.

Evans said it’s especially disappointing news because the city has been working with dispensaries to help them stay open and thrive.

“We’ve tried to be proactive with these stores to do what we can to get them to try to stay in our community,” Evans said.

The city registers show several thefts at the store in March. Rochester Police told News10NBC that someone tried to break in overnight in early March, breaking the glass in the doors.

Rochester City Councilman Jose Peo said the closure represents a bigger problem.

“Unless we address the issues on these streets and hold people accountable for the actions they take, stealing from this place, walking in with suitcases, walking out with tons of product, we’re going to continue to see disinvestment,” he said.

As for the suspect who tried to break in a month ago? RPD said he has been issued tickets but has failed to appear in court. He currently has an active warrant for his arrest for the burglary and four other unrelated crimes.

Erika Cost: “So how can we meet the needs of society? If it is poverty, whatever it may be?”

Jose Peo: “So the thing is, I grew up in poverty, but it was never okay to steal. Just because I was poor doesn’t mean I resorted to taking from others. People need to understand that there is right and wrong, and when you do wrong, there must be consequences for your actions.”

There is a Family Dollar near the Rite Aid on Portland Ave. Many neighbors said they are going there. The closest drugstore options appear to be Rite Aid on North Clinton Avenue or Walgreens on Culver Road. They will be about a 6 or 7 minute drive for this neighborhood. For walkers, these will be over 25 minutes.

President of the North Clinton Avenue Business Association Albert Algarin said he is concerned that the Rite Aid on North Clinton may close. He said he has heard word from Rite Aid officials that it might happen, but the company has not confirmed any of it.

News10NBC reached out to Rite Aid to see if crime was a factor in the Portland Ave closure, but has not heard back.

The full Rite Aid statement is below:

“Like all retail businesses, we regularly review each of our locations to ensure we are meeting the needs of our customers, communities and the overall business. A decision to close a store is one we take very seriously and is based on a number of factors, including business strategy, lease and rental considerations, local business conditions and viability, and store performance.We review every neighborhood to ensure our customers will have access to health care, whether at Rite Aid or a nearby pharmacy, and we work to seamlessly transfer their prescriptions so that there is no disruption to services. We also strive to transfer associates to other Rite Aid locations where possible.”


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