From Groceries To Books at the 30th Street Market

Remember that mass Albertson’s exodus? When the grocery stores in the Boulder locations of Diagonal Plaza and 30th-and-Walnut just up and went away this summer?

Something has finally taken over one of those locations. Crown Books has moved into 30th Street Market.

I checked ’em out the same day this week that I ended up at Twisted Pine. They’re a little scary, actually. I peeked inside and found that a good third of the house lights weren’t on–and not every other light, but, like, half the store was a cave. Where the produce and deli used to be, books skulked in a spooky mercantile twilight. The store front listed nice wide business hours, and the door stood wide open, but I didn’t see a single employee at work in there, not even at the check-out stands. All in all, it somehow managed to continue to look like an empty ex-grocery store rather than a book warehouse.

There’s a sale going on, marking everything in the store down, some items by as much as 90%, and yet at the same time there are signs everywhere that say NOW HIRING, with the result that the store can’t seem to decide whether its coming or going.

I don’t really miss the 30th Street Market Albertson’s–I still harbor resentment over its usurping the space that used to be Leevers–but I’m highly suspicious of this Crown Books entity. It would probably be worth a good 5,00 words if I worked a parody of it into my NaNoWriMo novel, positing it as an outlet for stolen books, banned books, and frighteningly obsolete books (like, say, DOS 6.2 For Dummies) which come to life at night and go out with an evil flutter of paper wings to prey on the local homeless population… but I’m just not writing that sort of a book, you know? My heroine runs a nice bookstore. With better lighting.

4 Comments so far

  1. Belle (unregistered) on November 9th, 2006 @ 5:31 pm

    Yes, that store is depressing and I wonder why the owners think that Boulder is a good market for great quanities of marked down books sold by people who don’t care. Do you remember the swell of indignation about Borders coming downtown to compete with Boulder Bookstore? (note: Borders is moving to 29th St and Barnes and Noble is going 2 story where the Landmark Theater is/was)
    The scary ‘sale’ for me was at the end of summer. For some reason the parking lot in front of Savers was filled with free furniture that remained there a few weeks during a rainy period. Is that something that Boulderians want? Soaked, used sofas?

  2. Nicole J. LeBoeuf-Little (unregistered) on November 11th, 2006 @ 4:33 pm

    Soaked, used sofas have this going for them–they’re harder to light on fire.

    I’m really sad to hear that B&N is going to take over the Landmark (used to be Magnolia) theater. But then Landmark’s moving to 29th Street, too, isn’t it?

  3. Belle (unregistered) on November 11th, 2006 @ 8:07 pm

    Some big multi-plex is going in at 29th St on just north of Home Depot. The theater in the McGuckins shopping center will close soon and a Sunflower Market will go in there – sooo – no movie theaters in Boulder for a few months.

  4. John (unregistered) on November 13th, 2006 @ 8:46 am

    I’ve been in a few of those crown book caves. They’re all creepy and poorly lit. Not sure what brain trust thought poor lighting and downright creepy environments were conducive to selling old/outdated books

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