No Frills closure surprises East End community

A number of East End residents were surprised to discover today that the No Frills on Coxwell and Gerrard is closed for renovations — and will be for an unknown amount of time.

A sign was taped to the front door of Rocca’s No Frills this morning notifying the public of the closure. Throughout the day, conversations about the situation on neighbourhood social media groups speculated about the reasons behind the closure and expressed concern about the state of the building and the inconvenience the sudden closure presented. 13226979_10156769024150417_247233624958858985_n

In an emailed statement, Kevin Groh, Vice President, Corporate Affairs and Communication, Loblaw Companies Limited — Loblaw is the parent company of No Frills — said that the store was “not closed due to an infraction” and that the closure would not be permanent.

“Rocca’s No Frills has served the community for decades and plans to serve it for decades more. To do that, significant building improvements and renovations are required,” he said.

The company “proactively made the decision to close the store” and “will be making significant improvements to the building.”

Groh said there is not a confirmed timeline for the renovations but they will open the store “as quickly as possible.”

In the meantime, he said that the owner of Rocca’s No Frills and the company are “doing everything possible to identify employment opportunities for employees at other No Frills locations during the closure” and that “in the interim employees will be provided financial support in excess of employment standards” and would be welcomed back when the store reopens.

To reports that some employees turned up for work this morning to find the store closed, he said that “every effort was made to inform employees of the store closure prior to this morning.”

The store will be providing a shuttle for customers from the Coxwell location to the next closest No Frills, Dave and Charlotte’s No Frills on Carlaw. That service will be available daily, starting Friday, every 15 minutes from 8:00 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. with no service between 1:00 p.m. and 2:00 p.m.

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What a way to treat your customers! And employees!
No warning at all when Loblaws new this was going to happen?
I use a mobility device and walk to the store. I was shocked when I got there around noon.
I shopped here roughly 4 to 5 times a week. Superb cashiers.
Have to really think about frequenting Loblaws owned stores after this. You’ll need to win me back.
Should have warned us.
Disappointing to say the least.

I personally don’t go there anymore because of the bad customer service I hope that improves when they reopen.

Too bad. I’ve been using that store since I moved to the lower east side about forty years ago. I think it was a Loblaws before. There have been issues over the years and much of the floor has steel plates on it. I also recall the occasional ‘wet basement’ smell so perhaps the rumours of structural issues is true.

I really don’t like the Carlaw store. Can anyone suggest an alternative?

Hi Allan,
I don’t mind the Fresh Co’s at Lakeshore and Leslie.
But i will most likely go up to Woodbine and Danforth for my shopping, I like this store. Can remember the name, might be Valu Mart. It has been there as long as I have been alive, 48 years and still going and is staffed by locals.

That Valumart (another Loblaws-owned store) is very expensive with limited selection. For lots of people in the area who shop on foot (including lots of seniors) this is a big problem. Loblaws also owns Shoppers on Danforth, but that’s a very, very expensive place to buy food.

Thank you Joe,
I have to admit I have not been up there for many years.
Anyone else have any suggestions where we can shop?

It is sad to see a local favorite vanish without a word.
While I would like to see No Frills return, it will need to win me back with more than (belated) sweet words and free bus rides…

Currently, I have found that the prices at the independant grocery stores (Galaxy supermarket & Fu Yao), in Chinatown East (Broadview Ave. and Gerrard St.E.), are much, much better, and the food is just as fresh, or better than it ever was at No Frills.

Other local alternatives are the Freshco at Leslie and Lakeshore, and the Food Basics at Gerrard Square.
Foodland (formerly IGA) at Pape and Danforth will also make home deliveries a fee.

As far as I am aware, none of these stores belong to the Loblaws / Weston Co.

My family has shopped at this location since we moved into the area in 1969.
It was a Loblaws store when I was a kid, it was a weekly Thursday night thing.
Myself and my mother still live in the area and use this store, mom just had knee sergury, so this store has been a life line for being so close.
I am very upset that Kevin Groh the V.P. of Corporate Affairs and Communications did not communicate this closing at all. Not very good at his job if you ask me.

Loblaws you have to win me back, there better be one hell of a grand re-opening party to get me there.

I have emailed Loblaws and requested Kevin Groh be fired.
To be a communications V.P. you should be able to communicate.
Follow my lead and let Loblaws know we mean bussiness when you mess with our community.

Yesterday (11th May, 2016) they closed it and today (12th May) morning I see a painters paint over the “No Frills” sign while an Armed Police man is on guard duty. Tells a lot. When was the list time you saw someone paint the exterior of a building while there is armed Police to apparently “protect and serve” WHO?? Something doesn’t add up. Sinks of…oh well…

Coincidently, I heard a rumor about a year-and-a-half ago that possibly the whole northeast corner of Coxwell and Eastwood, including the No Frills, would be redeveloped. Plans allegedly included a new Loblaws, LCBO and condos.
I didn’t think much of it until the No Frills was suddenly and mysteriously closed without warning to employees or customers. Based on that rumor, I’m having trouble believing that that this store will reopen as a No Frills. I’m thinking another super store along with their high prices. Our neighborhood is changing quickly.

I am very disappointed with the Loblaw family they think that we are able to go to other no frills stores at the drop of a dime
Not all of us have the time and money to just go where they want to take us
I feel that the staff should have been told before they were locked out

shame on you looks good on ROCKA as he is a mean mean owner

I was very shocked Saturday to find that The No Frills store was closed earlier in the week. I live 5 minutes away and it was so convenient
to pick up groceries right around the corner. Shopped there for years. I had picked some things up earlier on Monday or Tuesday and there was no hint of closing! It feels like visiting a relative, and two days later they’re gone!

So much for doing the work “as quickly as possible”. I was there this morning to take the shuttle bus (a month after it closed) and no work has been started at all. It’s deserted.

I live in the Coxwell & Gerrard area, and what they have done here is just Horrendious!
They left without any notice, and the shuttle service is useless. This is a Business! Since when does a renovation take so long that they have no concern of losing money! To be closed for more than six months, and not opening before Christmas tells me one thing, they are trying to sell the location and they are closing for good! Don’t you get it people? They say they are closing for renovations so the local people won’t protest! It’s the oldest trick in the book! Don’t be fooled!

It’s caught up in planning permissions

““We will absolutely reopen both Rocca’s No Frills and Vi’s No Frills, and would open them today if we could,” says the vice president of corporate affairs and communication. “In both cases, the closures were out of our hands and related to the buildings’ need for significant repairs. Vi’s will reopen soon and Rocca’s is a bigger job that needs time, patience and City permits.” ( . )

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