On The Greaux – The building boom continues in Lafayette

Rouses Opens in YoungsVegas*
January 29, 2009, 3:36 pm
Filed under: New Commercial Development, New Construction | Tags: , ,

This morning (Thursday) at 8am Rouses opened the Louisiana-based grocery chain’s newest store in Youngsville.  The store is the first major retail component of the Sugar Mill Pond development, and is located at the corner of Hwy. 92 and the new Youngsville Pkwy.  These pictures are from Wednesday, when the parking lot was likely full of vendors and employees getting ready for the opening.

This is Rouses first Acadiana store.  The chain was founded in Thibodaux in 1923, and until recently only had a presence in the Bayou area of Houma/Thibodaux/Morgan City.  Post-Katrina, Rouses bought the Sav-a-Center chain’s stores in the New Orleans area, and on the Mississippi Gulf Coast.  Rouses prides itself on a wide selection of Louisiana products – including specialty meats and seafood.

I think Rouses has a great Wal-Mart fighting formula.  Too many national grocery chains have gone out of business because they tried to compete with the major discount super-centers.  The chains that will survive are going to be the ones that do something different, and do it well.  The Rouses in the New Orleans area seem to be doing well – and I think the Youngsville store will thrive – despite nearby competition (Wal-Mart and Albertson’s on Hwy. 90).  I’m sure they’d like to build a Lafayette store (maybe River Ranch?), but I’d imagine land prices are near much higher Youngsville prices.

Next to the store is a sign for a proposed strip shopping center, but I am surprised to not see any out-parcel / pad sites in front of the store on Hwy. 92.  I’m not sure if they had any land limitations fitting into Sugar Mill Pond.

*I sometimes like to refer to Youngsville as YoungsVegas for two reasons.  One, the name fits the area’s gold rush, build-it-and-they-will-come vibe.  The other reason is of course it just sounds funny. 

QUESTION: Do you think Rouses will make it in Youngsville?  Have you been to the store – what’s it like?  Leave a comment below.