New grocery concept offers relief to Pa. food desert

NEW YORK — Limited access to healthy, affordable food choices, is an oft-cited reason for poor food habits among the nation's less fortunate. In order to address this issue, hunger relief organization Philabundance has teamed up with retail design consultancy CBX to create a prototype for a not-for-profit grocery store.

Slated to open this summer in Chester, Pa., Fair & Square will sell nutritious food staples with a focus on fresh produce, meats, dairy, seafood and frozen foods at everyday low prices. It will give residents of Chester -- one of the 35 “food deserts” in the Delaware Valley according to the USDA -- the access to "good food right around the corner" that has not been available since the town's last full-scale grocer closed in 2001.

Philabundance recently purchased a former grocery building in the town of Chester and gave CBX the assignment to create a colors and materials palette as well as signage and graphics for the 13,000-sq.-ft. store. The firm will also design perimeter departments and the store's center core. 

All creative work will be based on collaboration between CBX and Philadelphia-based LevLane Advertising, which designed the Fare & Square logo with Philabundance. 

"We'll be drawing heavily on both the Fare & Square brand direction as envisioned by LevLane and the existing supermarket footprint of the Chester space," said Joseph Bona, president of CBX branded environments. The design will incorporate functional merchandise fixtures, flooring, lighting and signage.

Under its not-for-profit grocery store model, Fare & Square will offer a customer-focused shopping experience and will partner with local organizations and businesses to provide a range of services to the community in a meaningful and memorable way. 

“Ultimately, we're designing a neighborhood store that will have the look and feel of a traditional supermarket in that it's clean, well lit, convenient and friendly, but also a place that the community can call their own, instilling a sense of optimism, pride and connection,” Bona said.


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