Fresh Collective Alberton, a much-loved local supermarket in the heart of Mt Albert was forced to close earlier this year after experiencing devastating damage in the Auckland Anniversary floods.
The flooding saw rainwater gush into the supermarket reaching up higher than knee level at its peak, submerging the entire store and destroying all the stock, equipment, and fittings.
Now, the supermarket, part of Foodstuffs North Island, is undergoing an extensive renovation which will see the store get a new, bigger layout as well as an expanded grocery offering for the community.
The revamped store will extend into the neighbouring site, formerly Italian restaurant Sal Rose, following a decision by the restaurant owners not to reopen. The new supermarket will be renamed New World Mt Albert and the team at Foodstuffs North Island are currently working through preparations for a new owner operator to take the reins.
James Cardno, who ran Fresh Collective Alberton for several years is now the owner operator of New World Whangaparāoa and will lend his support to the renovation project. James says he knows the supermarket’s presence has been sorely missed in the community these past months.
“I feel fortunate to be able to offer some advice with the new store having been part of the community for so many years.”
“Having seen the supermarket at its worst, with so much flooding, to have it brought back to life fully refurbished with lots of new improvements will bring myself and a lot of other people a huge amount of satisfaction.”
“So many of the locals were amazing after the floods, sending messages and offers of support, even though some of them were dealing with their own flooded homes.”
“People have told me how eager they are to see it reopen, so to have a full renovation will be such a positive outcome for Mt Albert locals after such a terrible event,” he says.
The renovation is currently in its planning stages but will include new fresh food options and former favourites like fresh sushi, an extensive wine selection as well as other new additions which will be shared closer to the planned reopening in May 2024.
To reduce the likelihood of being flooded again, new flood protection measures are being designed and will be built into the new building.
Following the closure of the store, team members were redeployed to other New World or Foodstuffs stores in the area and it’s hoped some familiar faces will be able to return once the new store opens next year.