The Albertsons on the corner of Harbor Boulevard and Wilson Street, a Costa Mesa neighborhood anchor for two decades, is set to close Feb. 22 — paving the way for a new Northgate González Market.
Melissa Hill, a spokeswoman for the Albertsons grocery chain, said the lease for the store — which opened in Harbor Center on Jan. 26, 2000 — was not renewed.
“Our goal is to offer all of the impacted employees a job and the ability to stay with the company,” she said Thursday.
Northgate will move into the location at the end of the year or early 2021 after a series of remodels, said spokeswoman Teresa Blanco.
She said Northgate is introducing a new “fresh mercado” concept for its grocery stores — with more open space and fewer rows of shelves. The new store will employ approximately 150 people, she added.
Northgate González Market is celebrating its 40th anniversary this year, according to a news release. The market began as an Anaheim liquor store, but the González family has since grown the business into a Latino-themed grocery chain with 41 stores across Southern California, the release stated.
On Wednesday afternoon, the existing Albertsons was a familiar flurry of activity. Customers moseyed up and down aisles as employees stocked shelves and stands with oranges, ice cream cones and assorted toiletries.
One worker took a momentary break from moving a pack of water bottles to greet a passing customer.
Few shelves were empty, despite the impending closure. Hill said final shipments will arrive and price markdowns will begin in the next couple of weeks.