Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Starting rumors: Last days of Rite Aid on First Avenue?

So have you been in the Rite Aid on First Avenue at Fifth Street lately? I haven't, because a trip inside just doesn't ruin your day, it ruins your entire month, at times. Maybe it's the lone cashier talking on her cell phone while trying to check out the 37 people waiting in line, some of whom always seem to be jawing at each other for some unknown transgressions. (Like cutting in line! Oh, those residents with the carts! Watch out!)

Anyway, I just bravely entered the place. And it's so picked over! The shelves are pretty empty! No restocking after stockpiling for Earl?







Anyway, to the PURE speculation: So I'm curious if this store is closing. Rite Aid reported a $208.4 million loss for the fiscal quarter that ended on Feb. 27 — the 11th straight losing quarter. According to published reports, the chain is shuttering 80 stores this year. As you may recall, Rite Aid closed on Seventh Avenue south of 14th Street last year.

Given this valuable chunk of real estate for a one-level building.... Perhaps the plans for the fancy condo will be revived without the bothersome drug store next door....



Previously on EV Grieve:
Sagging plywood offers glimpse of stalled 14-story condo on First Avenue

Shocker: A Rite Aid is closing

20 comments:

Minnie Romanovich said...

Wouldn't surprise me if it was indeed closing. That has to be one of the most depressing looking drug stores I've ever seen.

nygrump said...

That place has half empty shelves all the time, nothing new, I noticed the empty shelves a few years ago! But I usually try and buy from Block Pharmacy on 2nd Ave

esquared said...

but where will the christmas tree vendors sell their holiday crafts? i like walking thru there, just to smell the pine.

EV Grieve said...

Ah, good point, Esquared!

They weren't the ones selling pot too, huh?

esquared said...

@ ev grieve -- yeah, like i said, they sell the "holiday crafts", and i like the smell of "pine".

Goggla said...

Ugh, I hope they aren't closing! Yeah, this store has always been disorganized and sometimes an unpleasant experience, but it gets used/abused A LOT. It's not unusual to see empty shelves, especially before a big shipment. Then, we can look forward to aisles clogged with storage bins. It's just par for the course...I hope.

East Village Feed said...

I think this is just poor mgmt both at the corporate level and the local. I haven't read anything mentioning this is closing up.

@esquared - hilarious.

EV Grieve said...

I shouldn't be spreading rumors. I would think that this was a profitable store. Still, what do you suppose that land is worth?

marjorie said...

I just got yelled at by a cashier there -- I stepped forward when the last customer left and she barked, "DID YOU HEAR ME SAY 'NEXT'?" (My five-year-old asked, "Why is that lady so mad at you?") Every time I tell myself "never again," and every time I return eventually and regret it. (Just like Michael Corleone in Godfather III.) Way better: Avalon Chemists on 2nd Ave and Houston. Calvin, the pharmacist, is particularly awesome -- he'll call you if your insurance won't cover something, or if your doctor hasn't called him back, and they fill scrips fast and cheerfully. The selection of toiletries is pretty small, but they'll order stuff for you if you ask.

Anonymous said...

Agree on Avalon--much friendlier folks. This Rite Aid is one of the most forlorn places in the hood... Last fall a rat across the snacks aisle right in front of me, and I havent been back since.

Anonymous said...

Rite Aid lovers can always head over to Ave. D.

Anonymous said...

It's like Soviet Russia in there, the shelves have been bare for the last year.

blue glass said...

i too use block. i think it important to shop at local non-big-chain stores. while they don't have the buying power of the large chains they have that personal touch. they know their customers and if you get to know them they will do you favors when there are emergenciess. they are less likely to give you the wrong perscription or let you run out. cvs, duane reade, etc. chains don't care becuse they have so many other customers you don't matter at all.
the same goes for small grocery stores, coffee shops, butchers, etc. it will be a sad day when we are only able to shop at chain stores down here.

HippieChick said...

I never shop at that Rite-Aid: filthy, poor selection, incredibly rude and lazy salespeople.

I know chains are supposed to be of the devil, but the pharmacists at the Astor Place Wal-green's are absolutely terrific. They're cheerful, polite, they explain things (like maybe your pills had to come from 2 different manufacturers, so don't freak out because half of them look different). They always take time to make sure you understand the meds and ask if you have questions.

I went to Estroff for many many years, and still get some stuff there, but once they went CVS it went downhill...

EV Grieve said...

I actually don't mind the Duane Reade on 14th between 1st and 2nd... But the one on 14th and 3rd! Ugh. Once, though, one of the cashiers asked me if I wanted to buy pot from him. It was 9 am on a Sunday.

Marty Wombacher said...

@EV Grieve: Ha ha ha! Now THAT'S what I call customer service!

Anonymous said...

Regarding the Rite Aid on 1st Ave & E. 5th, agreed about most of the comments (especially the long lines and often the ridiculously inattentive cashiers), and it starts with management. But on the positive side, I've found the pharmacists there to be very polite and helpful.

Anonymous said...

i have a nostalgic soft-spot for this Rite Aide because once an old lover from 25 years ago breathlessly followed me in there just to say 'hi' (ah, after one is 50 years old this actually means something).
as for most pharmacies - i can't find what i last found in any of them the next time i go looking for it.
always the new...

kim

AWKWORD said...

ive experienced that exact situation.

Anonymous said...

Wow! I thought I was the only one who found the cashiers there to be the most surly in the city! I vowed never to go back there after my last encounter with the WalMart rejects behind the counter. OK, OK, I know that was mean of me to write but still!