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19 stores seeking alcohol permits in formerly dry areas of Longview

By Richard Yeakley
June 17, 2013 at 10 p.m.

Almost 20 grocery and convenience stores in formerly dry areas of Longview have applied with the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission for permits to sell beer and wine since the May 11 election.

Stores including Sam's Club, both North Longview Wal-Mart retail stores, Albertsons Market, Brookshire's of Longview and Super 1 Foods north of Loop 281 have filed, according to data obtained Monday.

Albertsons, Brookshire's and Wal-Mart each donated $20,000 to the campaign in support of the passage of beer and wine sales.

Shortly after the May vote, where Longview residents handily supported the sale of beer and wine for off premise consumption in historically dry areas, a spokeswoman with Brookshire's Food and Pharmacy, which also operates Super 1 Foods stores, said it was likely the stores would have beer and wine on the shelves by the July 4.

However, beer and wine may hit the shelves sooner rather than later.

A spokeswoman for the TABC's Longview office said the first permit may be issued as early as Friday.

Roy Hale, a planner for the TABC, said after the results of the election were canvassed an application for beer and wine sales must be approved by city and county officials, the turn-around time for an application with the commission is about 45 days.

In addition to the large grocery stores, many convenience stores have filed for permission to sell the beverages.

Three E-Z Mart stores, five Food Fast stores and two Walgreens stores are also awaiting their approval to sell beer and wine, according to the TABC report.

But the sale of beer and wine may cause more substantive changes then new aisles at a grocery store.

City records reveal that three grocers have filed permits for alterations of their store in the wake of Proposition 1's passage.

Brookshire's of Longview, at 3354 Gilmer Road, and Super 1 Foods, at 2301 W. Loop 281, both operated by Brookshire Grocery Co. have budgeted $47,000 and $31,000 respectively for alterations.

Brookshire's of Longview's work will include an exterior canopy, interior beverage coolers and relocation of minor furniture/fixtures; while, Super 1 Foods remodel will include installation of interior beverage coolers and relocation of minor furniture/fixtures.

A spokeswoman for the organization said the offerings would resemble their South Longview facilities.

"I think it is fair to say we will have a lot of the popular beer and wine products, and then any speciality choices will be determined by customer desires," she said. "Our plans will be for the products to be available to the customers soon after the permits are approved," said Rebecca Sanders, director of public affairs for Brookshire Grocery Co.

The largest adjustment will be undertaken by the Albertsons Market, located at 3603 McCann Road, which has requested a $400,000 interior/exterior remodel, according to a request for a building permit filed with the City of Longview.

A representative for Albertson's Southwest was not able to be reached Monday for comment on the renovation.

<h3>Map of businesses that have applied for TABC permit</h3>

<iframe style="width: 100%; height: 500px;" src="http://www.zeemaps.com/pub?group=595273" frameborder="0" width="320" height="240"></iframe>



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