The vacant Fresh ’n Easy grocery store in the Gordon Ranch Marketplace will become the home for the third Dollar Tree discount store in Chino Hills.
Construction work is underway for interior remodeling.
It will be one of the larger Dollar Tree stores with 15,300 square feet of space.
Although some residents aren’t thrilled with the tenant, others said they are looking forward to a place they can buy household and holiday/seasonal celebration items at a low price, even if it is the third store in the city.
Dollar Tree stores are also located at the Chino Hills Marketplace on Pipeline Avenue and Chino Hills Parkway and Crossroads Marketplace at Peyton Drive and the 71 Freeway.
The shopping center representative came before the Planning Commission in 2017 stating he had high hopes to attract a large anchor tenant but it was a struggle.
Ralph’s grocery store operated as the anchor tenant from 1992 to 2006, occupying 47,263 square feet. The shopping center had no major anchor until Fresh ’n Easy came along in 2008, but it only occupied 15,300-square feet. The store closed in 2015.
Building official Winston Ward said the departure of Ralphs had a depressing effect on the rest of the shopping center and Fresh ’n Easy never took off.
Mr. Ward said when the Dollar Tree and Blake’s Swim School are occupied, the center will have only one 1,900-square-foot suite vacant.
Blake’s Swim School was issued tenant improvements permits in September 2020, he said.
The building passed some plumbing inspections in January of this year and pool inspections in February. Some of the newer businesses on the same side of the center (south side) are 3 Point Play Zone, a basketball training facility with play area and birthday venue, Magikid Robotics Lab, Perfect Life, Mighty Jungle Flooring, Robeks Fresh Juice & Smoothies, and Tanna Orthodontics.
“That’s a 98.5 percent occupancy rate which is pretty good,” Mr. Ward said.
A gym called GC Crossfit was issued a certificate of occupancy in 2020 and is expected to open soon.