FERNLEY - Three years of murmurs that Scolari's would build a new supermarket in Fernley became a formal announcement Wednesday.
Reno-based Scolari's Food and Drug Co. plans to break ground in January on a 46,000-square-foot superstore to replace the antiquated Scolari's that still carries the Warehouse Market signage from the early 1980s.
The new store will go up behind the existing Scolari's and will become the anchor of a new 116,000-square-foot shopping center. It is expected to open in July.
"It's about time," Fernley resident Rodger Denn said. "That store is worn out."
Scolari's held off building a new store in Fernley until it sold the store built in Yerington in 1996. The Yerington store sold early this year, said Randy Potl, Scolari's real estate representative.
The anticipation has caused frustration for Fernley shoppers who knew a new supermarket was on the way but who had to endure an indefinite wait for the modern features found in any newer supermarket.
"We're in the caveman age when you go into that store," Fernley resident Pam Spinner said. "There's no deli, no bakery. You wouldn't believe how many people go to Reno or Fallon to go shopping."
The new Scolari's will offer a pharmacy, full-service bakery/deli, video rentals, a floral shop, non-food departments and fresh seafood.
Scolari's arrived in Fernley in 1982 when the company bought the 31,900-square-foot Warehouse Market built a few years earlier.
Scolari's plans to demolish the entire shopping center except for the McDonald's once the new supermarket and shop space is finished.
Potl said national retailers, drug stores and restaurants are being notified of available space in the new, larger shopping center at Main Street and Newlands Drive.
"What we will be able to provide is a basis for national chains to have an opportunity to locate in Fernley," Potl said.
The new shopping center will mark the first time Fernley has had a center that could possibly attract national chains.
"We take that to heart in that we've designed a shopping center that reflects the character of Fernley," Potl said.
Potl hopes the existing businesses can move into the new center between July and September.
Pizza Factory, located in the strip mall next to Scolari's, plans to move into the new shopping center, likely into space nearly twice as large.
"I've totally outgrown this store," owner Karen Streckfus said. "This center will be a really good shot in the arm for Fernley. I personally feel it will be the hub for Fernley."