The ground floor of the former V&D department store building on the Grote Markt will house a new location for the Jumbo supermarket chain, and the building itself will be undergoing major changes: the iconic escalators will be removed.
The Groninger Internet Courant reports that Maripaan Groep, the company behind the plans will be completely changing the layout inside the five-story building on the Grote Markt. The iconic escalators will be removed and the 1,500 square meter basement will be converted into bicycle parking.
Jumbo City, an upscale offshoot of Jumbo, already has a location on the Ebbingstraat around the corner. Dagblad van het Noorden reports that Jumbo City will close its doors on the 30thof August in order to be expanded further and connected the Jumbo on the Grote Markt side, which is set to open in 2020. The new store will also feature a Foodcafe, where shoppers can grab a cup of coffee or some sushi before or after doing their groceries.
The company also owns La Place, the restaurant chain on the top floor of the building. Jumbo is the second largest grocery store chain in The Netherlands behind Albert Heijn, and the company has grown rapidly in recent years by opening new locations and taking over other existing grocery store locations
The Jumbo Foodmarkt at the Hitachi Global Mobility Stadium, where FC Groningen plays, is one of the largest in the Netherlands with 4,000 square meters of floor space. The store was closed for six weeks last fall and converted into a food market with an extensive vegetarian and beer selection.
The V&D (Vroom & Dreesman) department store, which had defined the city centre since 1958, filed for bankruptcy in 2015. After a short lived take over by Topshelf, a range of companies and initiatives (such as plans for potential student housing) have been vying over the valuable real estate on the Grote Markt for years. In 2018, the store was converted into a pop up mall called De Grote Roltrap and hosted an eclectic mix of local companies and restaurants, but the project closed its doors in January.