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Friday, February 23, 2007

Coming to a corner near you

Sometime last year, in a post about urban renewal, a reader mentioned how CVS Pharmacy stores were popping up in these areas. Since that post, a few more have opened in my neighborhood, but there aren't as many stores as there are Starbucks stores. That number could change as my neighborhood keeps seeing renewal, including the historic Deep Ellum area. But I'm curious: why is CVS so synonymous with urban renewal? Are grocery stores and Walgreen's just not "with it"?

Talking with a realtor last year, she said a number of people moving into these new high-rise rectangles are not just people my age, but empty-nesting Baby Boomers. I understand the need to have a pharmacy nearby any place, but why so many CVS stores in general? There are at least four CVS stores within ten minutes of where I live. Considering the fact there are three Borders and two Barnes & Noble stores within twenty minutes of where I live, this seems normal. But still, why CVS? Are they planning a Starbucks-like takeover of the market?

In my two and a half years living here, I've been to a CVS store only once. Picking up Jason after he had finger surgery, he needed some prescription drugs to be filled. I found the store to be accomodating, but nothing out of the ordinary of drug stores I went to growing up. I know CVS bought out Eckerd's, but it seems all that was changed was the store's color from blue to red.

Am I missing something crucial in the difference between CVS and their competitors? Is the company expanding more each day with each old aparment complex/strip mall being torn down? Should I be thankful that there are pharmacies around here? Has convenience become too convenient in this case?

3 comments:

amy said...

well, here is my take on things. i was a diehard "walgreens" customer. then, i ventured into a cvs. only because it's about a mile closer to my house...within walking distance. for the longest time, they were the "other" guy. i ended up switching my prescriptions to cvs. i suppose because of the convenience in distance but more importantly, they have the seasonal candy that i like.

i probably shouldnt talk shit about starbucks. apparently, i've been hired there. i'm not sure what the deal is yet. i haven't even interviewed but i've been made aware that i'm "hired".

Random Kath said...

Here in the DC area, CVS tends to take over buildings where old, rundown cultural icons stood - for example, in Georgetown CVS took over the building where the old Biograph movie theater stood, and some people are still really ticked off about that even though it was, oh what? 10 or 15 years ago?

But in a place where there is urban renewal, companies count on the fact there will be so many newcomers who have no idea about the history of the place that any outrage is rendered moot. Sucks, but is true . . .

Kev said...

I promise you there's one CVS that I will never patronize: The one in Denton that's planned to be built where the Tomato now stands.