Another Riverhead grocery store is closing its doors.
After more than four decades of business, King Kullen will close its location on Route 58 in November, according to Joseph Brown, King Kullen’s senior vice president.
The lease for its Riverhead location expires next month, Brown said, and the company has decided not to renew it.
King Kullen does not expect any layoffs of employees because they will be offered relocation at other company stores. The store currently employs 6 full-time and 40 part-time workers, according Joseph Fedele, a spokesperson for King Kullen’s union.
“We’re glad that there’s no layoffs, especially with what’s going on with the A&P bankruptcy,” he said this afternoon. “The future of a lot of our [union] members is up in the air right now.”
The store’s decision to close will make for two vacant anchor stores in the shopping center. Walmart’s former location has been vacant since it moved to a new location on the western end of Route 58 last year.
It will also be the second grocery store to close its doors in Riverhead in four months: Waldbaum’s on Route 58, located in the Home Depot shopping center, also announced in July that it is closing after its parent company, A&P, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy.
King Kullen did not say it was closing any other locations aside from its store in Riverhead.
Shoppers leaving the store this afternoon expressed shock, and some were confused about whether or not the store’s closing had anything to do with the recent Waldbaum’s announcement.
“That’s not good,” said Ralph Teuber, a Riverhead native. “I’ve been shopping here just about my whole life. My mother even shopped here.”
“That’s too bad,” said another shopper named Jean who had just finished shopping at the store this afternoon. “It’s very strange. They were always so busy.”
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