By Molly • Molly Walker • 

Rite Aid moving to new quarters

Rite Aid’s move to the other side of the highway is displacing National Glass, Rodda Paint, McMinnville Martial Arts, H&R Block, Papa Murphy’s Pizza and The Yogurt Shop. Some of them have already arranged for new quarters while others are still looking.

The permits estimate the cost of demolition at $70,000 and cost of new construction at $1.5 million. They list James E. John Construction Co. of Vancouver, Washington, as the general contractor.

The strip mall encompasses 26,028 square feet. The new Rite Aid building will feature a more modest 17,185-square-feet, according to the permits.

Rite Aid, which once wanted the former hospital site now occupied by Walgreens, currently occupies one of two anchor spaces in the Town Center Mall at 1201 N.E. Highway 99W. The other is Goodwill, which replaced Safeway.

According to Kristen Kellum, public relations specialist for Rite Aid, plans are still in the early stages. But she said the company is looking at a late summer or early fall opening in 2015, still more than a year away.

She said the entire staff would be making the move with the company. She said all current prescription drug relationships would be transferred to the new site as well.

The store will assume the company’s new “Wellness Store” format. It will feature a “Wellness Ambassador” serving as a bridge between the front part of the store and the pharmacy back, as well as a community liaison for periodic health events.

The concept calls for expansion of both the pharmacy and retail inventory.

It features an extensive line of GNC wellness supplements, an expanded caregiver section, a selection of fitness and workout equipment and a larger array of wellness books and magazines. It also features private pharmacist consultations and a drive-up service.

The new format debuted in the spring of 2011, and company officials say it has proven highly successful. In a letter to investors, Rite Aid chairman, president and CEO John Standley said the concept, coupled with a new customer loyalty program, had “played a key role in generating improved business results and strengthening Rite Aid as a wellness destination.”

“We’re very, very excited” to get the chance to introduce the new concept in McMinnville, Kellum said.

Plans filed with the city call for construction of a one-story building featuring a small mezzanine, a new five-foot sidewalk, extensive landscaping, a drive-up window, a 67-space parking lot, a 40-foot-wide driveway providing access from Highway 99W, and reconfigured accesses off Evans and 19th streets. It would run almost 23 feet in height.

The local store began as a Thrifty PayLess outlet. Rite Aid acquired Thrifty PayLess in 1996 and re-branded the local store in 1998.

The corporation began in Scranton, Pennsylvania, in 1962 as the Thrift D Discount Center. It became Rite Aid Corp. in 1968.



Don't want Papa Murphys to move. :( Unless it'll be closer to Carlton. What will be going in the old Rite Aid Store location?


Couldn't a local contractor and local laborers be found to do the job?? Why need to go all the way to Vancouver?? Or will they be using local people to do the job?


I had heard a rumor that Whole Foods was going to be demolishing the strip mall and constructing a store there. I would have much rather seen that then Rite Aid moving across the street. It's exhausting living in the middle of town and having to go to one end or the other to get your groceries. Disappointed.


Well, Whole Foods could always move into the space Rite Aid is vacating. Must be at least 25,000 square feet there.

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