Kroger to close Old Paris Road store, expand Bryan Station

Kroger announced plans Monday to close its store at Old Paris and New Circle roads by the end of January and use the savings to finance a major renovation of its nearby Bryan Station Road store.

The two are about a half-mile apart. Kroger opened its Bryan Station store in 1993 and bought the Old Paris Road store two years later from Randall's as part of a four-store acquisition. It owns the Old Paris Road property and will look for a buyer.

"It's a financial decision," Kroger spokesman Tim McGurk said of the closing. "The ultimate goal is to offer the shoppers on the north side of Lexington a first-class shopping experience, and the best way to do that is by combining efforts and putting all of our investment in the Bryan Station store."

The Old Paris Road store's 80 employees will be offered jobs at other stores in Lexington, McGurk said.

Some of them might end up at the Bryan Station store, which will expand to 90,000 square feet from 69,000 square feet. The store will take over the space formerly occupied by the adjacent Colorama Rental Center, and plans call for the addition of a drive-through pharmacy.

The renovation, which is expected to be completed by the first quarter of 2012, also will include expanded meat, seafood, produce and bakery offerings, McGurk said.

He said the store will be similar to the 125,000-square-foot Kroger Marketplace stores at Beaumont and on Richmond Road.

"It'll be the exact same as those on the food side but won't have as much of the furniture or general merchandise," McGurk said.

The Bryan Station Road store will remain open during the renovations. It'll be the first remodel for the store since 2002.