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Markets getting makeover
Publix stores will feature fresh look
The Publix on Atlanta Highway in Cumming is undergoing an upgrade to its façade. The store in one of two in Forsyth County that the company is remodeling. - photo by Autumn McBride

Customers at two Publix stores in Forsyth have probably noticed a few changes.

The Publix on Atlanta Highway in Cumming is undergoing an upgrade to its façade, while the store on Keith Bridge Road recently completed an interior facelift.

Brenda Reid, spokeswoman for the grocery chain, said every few years the stores undergo what is called a "save."

"That’s where we upgrade the paint and décor to keep the stores current," she said, explaining that’s what recently was completed at the Keith Bridge site in north Forsyth.

"We do those every five years or so for every store."

This was the first large-scale save at the Keith Bridge Publix, which opened in 2004.

"This is one of our higher traffic stores, so we wanted to bring it up to standards of some of the newer locations," Reid said.

Some of the upgrades include a new, more centralized customer service counter, as well as improvements to the pharmacy, bakery and meat sections.

A privacy area was added to the pharmacy.

"This way, patients can have an area to talk with the pharmacist if needed," Reid said.

The pharmacy also includes a longer counter and new tile.

Michael Wewers, who was waiting to have a prescription filled Tuesday, said he has enjoyed the changes.

"Everything is more attractive now," he said. "It must be a very productive store for them to make all these upgrades."

In the bakery, there are new glass cases and a "bread wall," where freshly baked breads are more visible.

"There’s also an area where customers can now walk up and get samples or place an order," Reid said.

In the meat department, a counter has been added that allows customers to walk up and order specific cuts.

In addition, a new seafood case has been installed, providing more fresh options.

Also receiving upgrades were the store’s floral, deli and produce sections.

The floral area is larger and sports new tiles.

In the deli, customers can now find ready-made soup, while the produce department features lower wood grain shelving.

The ice freezer has been moved over by the beer and wine area, which offers new selections.

Regular customer Gary Koostra likes the changes.

"We come a couple of times a week," he said. "We always come and get Cuban [sandwiches] in the deli. I like how the store is laid out now."

At the Atlanta Highway facility, an exterior makeover is under way.

"That store is getting a new roof and the front façade is coming off so workers can resurface the front and make it look more modern," Reid said.

Other planned improvements include repaving the parking lot and sprucing up the landscaping.

Opened in 1995, the store is the oldest Publix in Forsyth County.

Shirley Patterson has been a customer since its debut.

"I’ve shopped here a lot more since the Kroger [across the street Lakeland Plaza] closed. I used to bounce from one to the other," she said.

Patterson said she’s pleased the store is getting a facelift.

"I think it’s great," she said. "It will make it look more uptown."