Goodwill store part of Mesa corner's rebirth - East Valley Tribune: Talking Shop

Goodwill store part of Mesa corner's rebirth

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Jayson Peters writes the pop culture blog Nerdvana at http://blogs.evtrib.com/nerdvana. Follow him on twitter at http;//twitter.com/nerdvana.

Posted: Tuesday, October 25, 2011 5:30 am

A Mesa eyesore is coming back to life. The vacant retail center on the northeast corner of University Drive and Greenfield Road once housed a Fry’s grocery, but the 100,000-square-foot site has been vacant and quiet for years. Come Nov. 4, the corner will be home to a new 38,000-square-foot Goodwill thrift store.

Valley real estate magnate Michael Pollack says he received more than 100 emails and letters from people in the neighborhood before he bought the center for about $2 million and began renovating it.

The shopping center also now includes a cafe and martial arts studio.

In a statement, Pollack, a longtime supporter of Goodwill and its job training programs, said the corner’s possibilities are an example of the power of infill projects.

“I just knew I could make it better and make a difference,” he said. “So we walked around the neighborhood, met some of the neighbors and I asked them ‘How would you like it if I renovated the center?’ ”

The new Goodwill store, 4412 E. University, will be dedicated at a ribbon-cutting ceremony 9 a.m. Nov. 4 with a marching band and door prizes.

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