BY EDDY ZHAO '25
We’ve all seen it - that massive brick building at Kelley’s Corner. Some of us have even shopped there with our parents as children. Acton’s Kmart was a town staple all the way from its opening in 1976 to its closure in 2021. Since Kmart shut its doors two years ago, the lot has sat vacant -- until now.
You may have noticed that construction has been occurring at 282 Main Street, the site of the old department store. Indeed, the old Kmart is being transformed into something new: a Stop and Shop grocery store. Considering that the Stop and Shop company owns the land, it is no surprise that the building will soon be bringing grocery-shopping convenience to shoppers across Acton and Boxborough.
The previous Stop and Shop in Acton has long existed on the outskirts of town, so competition with the other grocery store of Roche Brothers has been light. However, when the new Acton’s Stop and Shop opens less than a mile from the current Roche Brothers, it will certainly bring competition for both chains. The competition may result in prices of certain items being driven upwards.
So what's happening to the land that the current Stop and Shop sits on? We don’t know for sure, but it’ll probably be converted into other retail space. From 2,486 stores at its peak in 1994 to twelve stores in fall of 2023, Kmart has faded around the world. It's good to know, though, that a new life will finally be given to the old abandoned brick warehouse once known as Acton Kmart.