Grocery retailer Hy-Vee says it is selling off nearly a half-dozen sites it acquired in recent years for new stores in the Twin Cities, as it reconfigures its growth plans.
Hy-Vee said in a statement that it is abandoning plans to build new stores in Farmington, Chaska, Blaine and West St. Paul, as well as a second store in Maple Grove. Some of those plans dated back to 2016.
“A lot has changed since we first acquired these locations,” Jeremy Gosch, Hy-Vee's president and chief operating officer, said in a statement. “As customers’ shopping patterns have changed over the pandemic, we’ve determined that there is a need for larger store formats that these current sites simply are not able to accommodate.”
Iowa-based Hy-Vee said it's now planning to build larger stores, covering 150,000 square feet or more of floor space, at sites farther apart.
The company said it needs the bigger stores in part to accommodate online shopping hubs, which will include more storage and pickup space.
Hy-Vee said it will sell off its surplus real estate in the Twin Cities. It will still operate 13 stores in the metro area along with others in Minnesota.
“In the meantime, we will continue to consider sites in and around the Twin Cities, which remains an important market for us,” Jeff Markey, Hy-Vee's executive vice president and chief growth officer, said in a statement. “We continue to be committed to being a major player in the food retail space in the Twin Cities and beyond, but these sites unfortunately don’t align with our strategy moving forward.”