Lyndale Remodel

The last couple months have
been an exciting time, to say the
least, at the Wedge Co-op. We
are in the midst of our largest
store remodel in history-fixing
building systems in disrepair and
adding new customer amenities.
While most customers seem
excited about the changes, we
have also gotten some good
questions from shoppers.
Wedge CEO Josh Resnik
tackles some of the toughest
questions here:

Q: “Why did you take away my
favorite item from Grocery? I have
been buying it for 12 years and this
is the main reason I shop here.”

A: We used the store remodel as an
opportunity to evaluate everything
in the store. Even in gaining almost
1,000 square feet, space is still
limited. In order to increase our
focus on the fresh departments
and provide a seating area for our
customers, we needed to reduce
the number of products in both the
Grocery and HBC departments. This was a task that wasn’t taken
lightly, and the teams went through
an extensive category-management
process. The goal of the reduction
was to reduce redundancy and
streamline selection within
categories, with a continued focus
on local and organic. If there
is something you love that we
removed from the shelves, please
drop us a note at the Customer
Service desk, and we will consider
stocking it again. Also, remember
you can always order cases of any
items-so if we took it off the shelf,
you can buy it by the case and get a
case discount.

Q: “Why do things keep moving
around? It is so confusing to shop
here during the remodel.”

A: It is difficult when things move
around. I have talked to a number
of shoppers who said they could
shop the Wedge before with their
eyes closed-that’s how well they
knew the layout. We knew at the
beginning of the project we wanted
to add some extra space and
improve the flow. To do that while
staying open, we had to move some
things around, like bulk, which is
in its second temporary home. It’s
kind of like a game of Rubick’s cube
to fit everything in. If you are having
difficulty finding anything, please
ask staff on the floor—they will be
happy to guide you to any product.

Q: “Why did you paint the
building gray? It looks like
a prison.”

A: This has been one of the most
polarizing things with the remodel. I
have gotten comments from people
who LOVE it and from people who HATE it. For those who are not fans
of the gray, I say hang in there, it
is not finished yet. We still need to
add our signage, a mural, and some
other finishing touches. I’ll admit it
was a mistake to paint the gray base
and leave it alone like that for eight
months. But I encourage you to
judge it once it is finished. If you still
hate it, I remind you it is what’s on
the inside that counts.

Q: “That’s great that you are
fixing the building. But what are
you doing about the parking?
That’s the worst part of shopping
at the Wedge.

A: We are not making any changes
to our main parking lot this year. We
looked at some changes that would
have added a few more parking
stalls and would have improved the
flow of the lot. But ultimately we
determined we could not afford
those changes on top of the cost of
the rest of the remodel this year.
We are adding a second entrance
to the southwest corner of the
store near Lyndale and 22nd, which
should alleviate some congestion
in the north parking lot. By adding
that entrance, it makes street
parking on Lyndale, 22nd St. or in
our south lot much closer to a store
entrance. We hope some people
(especially those stopping in
quickly for coffee or the juice bar)
will use that entrance, which will be
next to the coffee and juice bar.

Q: “When will this project be
over?”

A: Good question. Our schedule
projects that we will be finished
at the end of October. However,
with each passing month and each
new phase completed, it should
come closer and closer to feeling
like a finished store and less like
a construction zone. While we
know shopping has not been as
easy during the remodel, we really
appreciate all of the people who
have stuck with us throughout the
process. While we have lost some
sales during the remodel, it means a
lot to have so many loyal shoppers
stick with the Wedge despite the
disturbance. I promise that the
hassle associated with the remodel
will be well rewarded by a great
shopping experience when it is all
completed.