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5716 Berkshire Valley Rd, Oak Ridge, NJ

Original Tenant: A&P
Address: 5716 Berkshire Valley Rd, Oak Ridge, Jefferson, NJ
Opened: 1960s
Closed: ca. 2005
Later Tenants: Lakeland Bank offices
Photographed: July 2020
Yesterday we saw the Pathmark (later Fresh Emporium/Imperium) in Woodport in the southwestern part of Jefferson Township. We will continue our circuit around Dover, but for now we're moving up to the northeastern part of the township for two stores in the Oak Ridge section. A&P first built a location at Berkshire Valley and Chamberlain Roads in the 1960s, which was expanded to 39,000 square feet in the 90s to what we see here -- with a very familiar style of facade we've certainly seen before! The monument sign out on Berkshire Valley Road matches the building's facade...
But after A&P invested enormously in the store, it closed around 2005 -- but with a 61,000 square foot replacement immediately next door. In 2015, that store became an ACME, and we are also touring that store today over on The Market Report! Up next we're going to head out west on 46 to Budd Lake so that we can circle back east towards Randolph. Check out our posts tomorrow with one here and one on The Independent Edition!

Comments

  1. I left the following comment over at The Market Report (since it also pertains to the 5774 Berkshire Valley Road supermarket), but for those who might not have looked at that blog entry, I'll reproduce my comment below:

    "When researching the history of this store, note that newspaper articles and ads referred to both the [5774 Berkshire Valley Road] store and its predecessor(s) as being in Oak Ridge, Jefferson, or Milton. With that tidbit out of the way, here's some relevant history:

    *An A&P Centennial supermarket at 5716 Berkshire Valley Road opened on either June 25 or 26 of 1968.

    *The 5716 Berkshire Valley Road A&P was closed during the renovation and expansion of the store. It (temporarily) closed in early July of 1995 and reopened on February 7, 1996. The entire strip center was also renovated during this time period.

    *A&P relocated to 5774 Berkshire Valley Road on July 20, 2002.

    *Most of the vacant space in the former A&P at 5716 Berkshire Valley Road has been occupied by Lakeland Bank offices since August 8, 2012.

    I've long been perplexed as to why A&P spent so much money expanding and renovating the 5716 Berkshire Valley Road supermarket only to move a relatively short while afterward. It turns out that A&P did this so as to prevent ShopRite from building a store at 5774 Berkshire Valley Road. According to an article on Page 17 of the April 15, 2005 edition of AIM Jefferson (which is the name of the newspaper), "at one time Shop Rite [sic] had planned to open a store at the then-proposed Ridge Plaza. To block the competition, the A&P corporation took both the developer and township to court to prevent the construction of the new shopping area just steps away on Berkshire Valley Road. Anxious to move ahead with the project, the developer capitulated and permitted the A&P to relocate to the new, larger retail space. According to local officials, the A&P corporation continues to hold the lease on the vacant store and will not sublet to any business that poses a threat to its sales."

    As an aside to all of the above history, I'm guessing that this is the only time when an A&P with a "'90s Steel" facade replaced an A&P with a "'90s Centennial" facade. (Those specific types of A&P designs are in quotes, as I've noticed other supermarket aficionados refer to those store designs by those names.)"

    --A&P Fan

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    Replies
    1. Klae Construction's website provides a little bit of information about the conversion of (most of) the former A&P Supermarket to an Operations and Training Center for Lakeland Bank:

      https://klae.com/portfolio-items/lakeland-bank-milton/

      Unfortunately, Klae's website doesn't provide nearly as much detail about this project as it provides for more recent projects, but you can at least view a few images of the building's interior.

      --A&P Fan

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