Original Tenant: Village ShopRite
Address: 1711 NJ-10, Morris Plains, NJ
Later Tenants: Uncle Giuseppe's (renovations began 2021)
Photographed: June 2020
It's amazing that this Village ShopRite lasted all the way to 2013! Not so much that it was small, at over 40,000 square feet, but simply that it was outdated and wasn't renovated after the late 1970s, when Village gave it its last overhaul. It was replaced by the Cedar Knolls location, which was newly built closer to downtown Morristown and off NJ-10 -- notably moving farther away from the Morris Plains Stop & Shop, and much closer to the Morris Plains ACME.
Acme Style captured the store soon before its closure, which you can see here (along with their coverage of the new location and the Stop & Shop). Here's what the store looked like after ShopRite's closure. The store had been cleaned out with an auction of the fixtures as you can see in the poster in the first picture, but surprisingly the decor actually remained on the walls, for the most part. Watchung is the last Village to have this decor package intact, although it's largely still there in Millburn too. Dating back to the late 1970s or early 80s (since it was put in the acquired Good Deal stores, which Village purchased in 1976), it featured prominent wood paneling as we can see here in the entrance hallway. Unfortunately the store doesn't really have any other windows, but we can get a glimpse of the interior here...
Just about three weeks after I visited this store and was very surprised to find the store still abandoned eight years after its closure (it's possible Village held the lease for a while after moving out, too), Uncle Giuseppe's Marketplace announced they were moving into the space after extensive renovations. If you're curious about the culinary wonderland that is Uncle Giuseppe's, check out our tour of their Ramsey location here. And from culinary wonderland to culinary mediocrity, we have a tour of the Stop & Shop across the street here today as well! (That's not nice to say. Sorry to any fans of Stop & Shop out there.) Tomorrow, we're heading east along NJ-10 for our next Hanover area store over on The Market Report!