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Interest Grows Around Chester Avenue Acme

Deputy Mayor Greg Gallo says the township recently heard a pitch for a farmer's market at the shuttered building on Chester Avenue.

Interest in the shuttered Acme on Chester Avenue has picked up of late, according to the deputy mayor, including a recent pitch from a business representative interested in opening a farmers' market inside the building.

Deputy Mayor Greg Gallo said the interested party gave a presentation at a recent Economic Development Advisory Committee (EDAC) meeting for a “Reading Terminal Market-style” site.

“It’s a perfect building to accommodate that,” he said. “Moorestown would love this.”

Gallo said that type of business model would also present a perfect opportunity to showcase some of Moorestown’s farmers and their products, as well as multiple other local vendors. 

The building is owned by .

EDAC chair Jacob DerHagopian referred to the Chester Avenue Acme as a "key property" and a "gateway" for the town.

"(The property) is a priority for EDAC this year to see some type of transaction finalized," he said. 

DerHagopian said interest in the building has revolved around retail-type uses, which EDAC would prefer. He said the Friends School, since it no longer needs the building for educational purposes, seems to be on the same page as the township.

Asked for a status update on the property, Moorestown Friends School spokesman Mike Schlotterbeck provided a statement saying the school was working with commercial real estate firm NAI Mertz “to explore several options to lease 123 Chester Avenue.”

Though the deputy mayor could not recall the name of the business representative for the farmer's market, Gallo felt confident the pitch was legit.

“He’s done hundreds of these across the world, as well as across the United States,” he said. “This didn’t seem like a flyer.”

According to Gallo, EDAC has heard presentations from two businesses in the last two months interested in the building (including the aforementioned farmer's market), and there has been buzz around the property prior to that as well.

“I’m happy to see there are multiple parties getting serious (about the property),” he said.

"Obviously there's a long way to go from concept to finalizing a business transaction," said DerHagopian. "But I'd say we could be cautiously optimistic."

The Chester Avenue Acme closed roughly six years ago. Acme also at the beginning of last year.

sporty March 14, 2012 at 05:17 PM
A Farmers Market would be an excellent addition to Moorestown!

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