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242 Lincoln Blvd, Middlesex, NJ

Original Tenant: ShopRite
Address: 242 Lincoln Blvd, Middlesex, NJ
Opened: 1968
Closed: 1984
Later Tenants: Pathmark (1984-2015) > Price Saver Fresh Marketplace (April 2019-September 2019)
Photographed: July 2020
We're starting to the northeast of Somerville with a look at this 59,000 square foot store (which includes a liquor store to the far right of the building). It was built in the 60s as a ShopRite, notably not owned by Supermarkets General, then taken over by Pathmark in 1984.
Pathmark closed in A&P's final bankruptcy in 2015, then remained empty until four years later when a Supermarkets Plus-owned store called Price Saver Fresh Marketplace reopened the space after some light renovation. (Previous efforts by Supermarkets Plus included the Elizabeth location, which lasted about two years, and West Milford, which seems to do okay. That's due in large part to the support from the newly-independent Associated Supermarket Group.) This particular location lasted less than a year -- in fact, it was only open for about five months and I have to wonder how it's possible the store was such a miserable failure.
Price Saver subdivided the Pathmark, adding storage space in the back and a hardware section. This brought the sales floor down to just 36,000 square feet. The store closed and the space went up for lease, but shortly thereafter, the property was put up for sale. In early 2021, Food World Supermarkets entered negotiations to purchase the property, presumably to reopen the space as a SuperFresh. (See our recent tour at their Hopelawn location. Incidentally, I visited that store and this one on the same day -- long before Food World indicated that they were interested in this space.) Food World seems to have canceled or ended whatever negotiations they may have been involved in, however, and the space remains vacant and available.
A look at the supermarket's parking lot, which has been fenced off. Notice the Pathmark cart corral that has been painted. Let's take a look inside the store...
Main entrance on the left side of the storefront. I'm unsure how much of this area would've been changed by Price Saver and how much was left from Pathmark.
Entrance/exit foyer here, with the entrance on the left and the exit straight ahead. (We can see the store in business here.)
A former cafe area in the front. Notice how low the ceiling is in this part. Although some of the signage was removed from this store and brought to Highland's Market, it's also true that there was very little decor on the walls and much of it had the Price Saver logo, making it harder to reuse.
We can just catch a glimpse of the grand aisle to the far left, with EZ Pizza and the bakery in the front left corner, produce on the left side of the wall, deli/meat on the back wall, and dairy to the right. The hardware store was to the far right of the store.
I never got the chance to get inside this store during its short life, so I don't know the layout too well, but it appears the customer service counter is on the right side of the front-end.
With the pharmacy just around the corner...
An interesting find just inside the exit on this end of the storefront...
The Price Saver and Brown's Chicken signs from the storefront are, in almost pristine condition, sitting inside the store! I imagine these were discarded since it would be hard to reuse them. (It appears that the trademark to the name and logo are still live but owned by Supermarkets Plus LLC, which went bankrupt immediately after closing this store and appears to have been dissolved. Highland's Market is owned by West Milford Grocery Company, Inc., registered to Supermarkets Plus LLC's owner's home address.)
I can try to piece together the story here a little bit, but it appears that Supermarkets Plus LLC was evicted from the space. What I'm unsure of is whether the tenant was evicted before or after the closure of the store.
Posted on one of the entrance doors.
Note that one of these was (accidentally, I presume) hung upside down! The document printed on the white paper requires the tenant to be fully vacated by January 2020, suggesting that they were evicted at some point after closing in September of the prior year.
That wraps up our look at this! This is our first of two Middlesex stores, but the other one is way across town and we'll be seeing it in our next group. For our next stop, we're heading across the Raritan River to the southwest to Somerset for the next store on The Independent Edition!