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400 John F Kennedy Way, Willingboro, NJ

Original Tenant: Kennedy Shop n Bag
Address: 400 John F Kennedy Way, Willingboro, NJ
Opened: ca. 1970
Closed: 1998
Later Tenants: Eickhoff ShopRite (1998-2015)
Photographed: January 2021
You may have heard of Levittowns in New York and Pennsylvania, designed by William Levitt who sought to plan an ideal suburban residential community. Levittown, NJ was the third constructed, after New York and Pennsylvania, on the land of Willingborough Township, opening in 1958. And in 1959, the township officially became Levittown Township. The New Jersey township was notable among the Levittowns due to its central position in efforts to integrate housing: Levittown, NJ was intended to be an all-white community, and a lawsuit by a Black applicant to live in the community who was rejected sparked the creation of an integration program in Levitt's development company. Of course, as more Black families moved in to the township, many white families moved out. The township was renamed Willingboro again in 1963, and as for the demographics, as of 2010, Willingboro was 72% Black. If you're at all interested in the development of the community, the Wikipedia page and this article from a local NPR affiliate are worth a read. Anyhow, this isn't a suburban development blog, this is a supermarket blog! And a supermarket this was. The 30,000 square foot store was constructed around 1970 as the Kennedy Shop n Bag owned by the Eickhoff family, who joined Wakefern and converted their stores to ShopRite in 1998. In 2015, the Willingboro ShopRite moved about two and a half miles northeast to Burlington in a former Kmart. But there's still a grocery store in this strip mall, albeit a much smaller one -- the FreshTown Supermarket just next door. Check it out here, and tomorrow, we're heading about a mile and a quarter up to a small independent butcher and grocery store in town over on The Independent Edition!