Bettendorf Needs To Fill The Old Schnucks Building
The doors of the Bettendorf Schnucks closed on August 16. The store had been open there since 2005. Now, the building sits empty. Collecting dust waiting for it's next tenant. For the sake of Duck Creek Plaza, it can't stay empty long.
Duck Creek plaza is host to numerous other businesses that don't need an "anchor" to help drive in business. Home Depot, Walgreens, McDonalds. They'll be just fine. However, there are other small business that would get exposure and potential foot traffic by people heading to the Schnucks there. Plus, if you've been by Duck Creek Plaza lately, you'll notice the old Schnucks building is not the only vacant space. Many of the other small stores and buildings attached to it and near it, sit empty.
Before we talk about what that should be, let's talk about that issue with Duck Creek Plaza. Is it the location? Shouldn't be. Sitting on the corner or Middle and Kimberly there is plenty of traffic. (I drive pas it every day. Trust me, plenty of traffic) Has it simply been lack of a flourishing anchor store to drive traffic to the surrounding stores. Schnucks did well enough to drive traffic for 15 years. And before the pandemic, while Schnucks was open, those little stores were still closed.
So when I drive by and see all the empty buildings I just ask why. The big thing that drives me crazy, but is really a small thing in the grand scheme, is the 4 way stop. (Below) It's the most bizarre 4 way stop I've ever seen. You have cars coming from the same direction that both need to stop and look at each other and the other directions. You can see the map below. That is not how a 4 way stop looks. Not to mention the traffic coming from the Home Depot parking lot. While less traffic is rolling into the plaza, they may want to have an engineer look at a better design for this.
OK, that is annoying, but with the right stores people would go there. Or if it really drives them crazy, you can enter at Kimberly and avoid the worst 4 way stop in the Quad Cities.
The city of Bettendorf needs to work with the owners of the building to fill that spot. If they don't, not only will the city lose out on jobs and tax revenue from that one store, but also from the others around the old Schnucks as more of these businesses will die or need to move.
So what should be in this 60,000 sq ft building? Many old stores of this size have turned into individual spaces for small startups, community centers, fitness centers, apartments, indoor marketplaces and even storage. Meh. I'd love to see a Whole Foods, but the building is a little big, and this market really isn't the right fit.
Let us know what you think below!