Big business in Beulah: Developers eyeing site for grocery store
BEULAH, Fla. (WEAR) —
Big changes could be coming for Beulah residents. Rumors of a new grocery store and businesses being built in the area have folks excited, but a lot has to happen before construction begins.
Lola Vanderpool has lived on the corner of Nine Mile and Beulah roads for about six years.
"I stay at home with two puppies," said Lola. "I do my dishes and I write and watch TV."
When she does go out to run errands or to the store with her family, Lola said it takes hours.
"It's so spread out, we were out all day long yesterday," said Lola.
That's why Lola is just one of many Beulah residents excited about the possibility of a new large grocery store and additional businesses being built where a local bar, 'The Tavern' used to stand.
"I think it's good for the community that they have something where people can come instead of having to drive all the way into Pensacola," said Lola.
Before anything can be built though, first, Lola and her family have to move out.
"We had heard that they were going to sell this, so we're moving," said Lola. "If it's a Walmart, they might make a big one here or some other store."
A U-Haul truck already in the driveway, Lola said they're moving this weekend, and they're not moving far.
"Down the road about four or five streets I think!" said Lola.
Commissioner Jeff Bergosh, who has lived in the Beulah area for more than a decade, said it's about time the area got some options for shopping and dining.
"I think this is going to be a positive benefit for the community," said Bergosh.
As for which businesses could actually be coming.
"That's the million-dollar question!" said Bergosh. "Some people want a Trader Joe's, I'd like to see some great restaurant choices, I know that!"
Plans are still in the beginning phase. At the end of September, the developer sent a pre-application to the Florida Department of Transportation. Bergosh said right now, it's impossible to give a timeline for completion - if the plan is even approved.
"It hasn't even come to our development review process, that's a six-week process right there, on the minimum," said Bergosh. "Then you'd have to clear the land, there's a lot. I'd say a year and a half minimum."
As for Lola, she can't wait.
"They need something like this," said Lola. "So you don't have to drive so far."