When Heinen’s began looking elsewhere for land in 2013 to build its new food production facility, the City of Warrensville Heights partnered with the Cuyahoga Land Bank to help keep Heinen’s in its city. The family-owned and operated supermarket chain, headquartered in Warrensville Heights since 1961, along with its sizable grocery and refrigerated warehouses and distribution center, needed to expand.
At the time, Heinen’s owned a warehouse next to a 77,000 square-foot vacant business complex full of code violations, functionally obsolete, structurally unsound and crippled with uncollectible tax delinquencies of more than $200,000. When no one stepped up to pay the taxes, the Cuyahoga County Treasurer tax foreclosed the building.
The Cuyahoga Land Bank acquired the property from tax foreclosure and worked with Heinen’s and Warrensville Heights Mayor Brad Sellers to redevelop the foreclosed property. The Cuyahoga Land Bank spent the next year overseeing asbestos removal, environmental clean-up and, finally, demolition of the building. The land was then sold to Heinen’s in 2015. More than 50 Heinen’s associate’s jobs were retained and 25 new jobs added. The new 55,000 square-foot facility, which enhances the supermarket chain’s distribution and overall operational efficiency, was put into production in June 2017.