A Goodwill of North Georgia store and donation center will replace a former Kroger grocery that has laid vacant for years in Sandy Springs’ North End in a shopping center the city has targeted for redevelopment.

The Goodwill will open in the Northridge shopping center at 8331 Roswell Road in Sandy Springs, Tenee Hawkins, the director of public relations, said in an email. Hawkins said the store does not have an opening date yet.

A Google Maps image of 8331 Roswell Road where a new Goodwill location will open in Sandy Springs. (Special)

Goodwill of North Georgia is a chapter of a national nonprofit organization that offers job training and other community-based programs and operates thrift stores. Sandy Springs currently has two other Goodwill stores at 6650 Roswell Road and 1165 Perimeter Center West. Hawkins said the new store will be an additional location to those. A Goodwill donation center was one of the businesses displaced by the development of City Springs, the city’s civic and art center.

In June 2019, the building that formerly housed the Kroger was bought by Rafat Shaikh, the president and CEO of Safeway Group. At the time, Shaikh said he was negotiating with “several” potential tenants. Shaikh did not respond to a comment request regarding the new Goodwill.

The space held a Kroger for 35 years until October 2017. The closure was seen by city officials at the time as an opportunity to bring in higher-end retail and fueled their effort to promote redevelopment in the North End.

The city is in the midst of redevelopment conceptual planning for the North End. The architecture firm TSW is working on designs of four shopping centers in the North End to push for the redevelopment of the area, including the Northridge shopping center.

The city did not immediately respond to a comment request.

After the Northridge Kroger’s closure, a proposal to develop a Kroger-anchored project with hundreds of apartments and townhomes and several commercial buildings on Pitts Road in the North End was proposed by a developer. But the proposal evaporated due to public concerns that it would affect a historic family cemetery.

Hannah Greco is writer and media communications specialist based in Atlanta.