Steel beams continue to go up at Portage Path and West Market Street in Highland Square as the new Mustard Seed Market is under construction.
“It’s definitely a big visual change on that corner after months of looking at what looked like a mud hole,” said Phillip Nabors, president of Mustard Seed Markets.
The location comes years after neighborhood residents have clamored for a grocery store. The two-story, 23,000-square-foot store will hopefully be open by December, Nabors said.
Phillip and Margaret Nabors, the store’s founders, have lived in the neighborhood for 30 years. This will be their third location, adding to stores in Montrose and Solon.
The Highland Square store will be smallest for the family-owned business. The city of Akron and Mustard Seed are investing in the project and Mustard Seed will lease the store, with the option to buy, from the city, which received a federal loan.
Mustard Seed is also managing the nearby city-owned commercial strip that includes a Chipotle restaurant.
The first floor will have 14,000 square feet of retail space and all the categories of the bigger stores as well as prepared foods such as a salad bar, pizza, sushi, sandwiches and soup.
The upstairs will have a seating area and a counter with an a la carte menu.
There will be no wait staff. There is also an outdoor patio overlooking West Market Street.
The store will employ at least 47 people.
Separately, the Mustard Seed stores in Montrose and Solon will be giving away “thousands” of tree saplings on a first-come, first-served basis to celebrate Earth Day, Nabors said. The stores will be giving away the saplings from noon to 4 p.m. Saturday, April 19.