BRADENTON -- Demolition of the 13th Avenue Community Center building is set to start Wednesday, making way for a new grocery store and about eight other businesses in the Bradenton neighborhood.
The Bradenton City Council approved on March 28 plans to develop a grocery store and accompanying retail in the 13th Avenue West neighborhood, where neighbors and developers have said quality, fresh food is lacking.
The triangular lot has been vacant since 2010 after the community center moved its operations to East Bradenton.
The community center was founded in the 1930s and served as the "one other place where blacks could socialize, besides church," neighborhood resident Norma Dunwoody has told the Herald.
The development project is expected to create about 60 construction jobs and 25 long-term jobs, according to Cary Neil, manager of New Start Community Development, LLC.
In March Neil told the Bradenton council that construction would start in August and that the site would open in January 2013.
The eastbound lane of 13th Avenue West between First and Third streets will close from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. from May 30 to June 6 to accommodate for the demolition.