FLEMINGTON, NJ - It’s officially unofficial.
Although no formal plans have yet been filed, Lidl supermarkets is eying property on the Route 202-31 traffic circle here for one of its new locations. Representatives of the company are already in conversations with borough engineer Rob Martucci of Van Cleef Engineering about the site.
Lidl, which stated in a press release that it is “one of world’s largest retailers,” plans to open up to 100 stores along the east coast over the next year. The effort would create about 4,000 new jobs, according to the company.
In Flemington, the company is eyeing properties on Route 31 just north of the traffic circle that is now under reconstruction.
Lidl operates about 10,000 stores in 27 countries throughout Europe. It established its U.S. headquarters in Arlington Country, Va. in 2015.
Typically, the company looks for locations with a minimum of 4 acres to accommodate its typical 36,000 square-foot standalone store and parking for about 180 cars. It seeks high-density areas with traffic counts of 20,000 vehicles per day, according to the company’s U.S. website.
In the press release, the president of the company’s U.S. operations says that, “Grocery shopping involves too much compromise. Customers are being forced to choose between quality, price and convenience.
“This is a compromise they shouldn’t have to make,” said Brendan Proctor. “At Lidl, we are committed to delivering outstanding quality goods to our customers at market leading prices.”
Discussion about the Flemington location involves the now-closed Toy Kingdom store and may include moving the current Wendy’s restaurant slightly north, local sources say. The mostly-vacant strip mall to the south of Toy Kingdom, where Bestsleep Mattress Center, Kitchen Expo and the old California Grill once were, may also be part of the plan.
Company spokesman William Harwood said the company is “not addressing each individual site” but that “we are preparing a number of locations in New Jersey.”
Lidl’s corporate headquarters are in Neckarsulm, Germany. Its name rhymes with “Beatle.”