1967 vintage Gemco (now Target) to close Jan 6

Uh...California.

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surfingdude
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Post by surfingdude » 05 Jan 2007 23:20

I remember Granada Hills. It was the 13th Gemco, #514 (there was no #513). The next stores in the LA area were Glendora (#515), Fullerton (#516) and Woodland Hills (#519). Two were opened in No. California around the same time, Sacramento (#517) and Stockton (#518).
Woodland Hills was still operating as a Target the last time I was in the LA area, anyone have info on the others from the late 60's?

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Daniel
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Post by Daniel » 06 Jan 2007 04:56

This is probably getting off the topic, but here's a shot of the sign from the Visalia, Ca Gemco store:

Image

Jeff
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Post by Jeff » 06 Jan 2007 12:43

The San Gabriel store is still there, and has been sorta remodeled. It was never remodeled as a Target, and you could even see the old GEMCO labelscar under the Target logo.

This store when closed was original still (they closed cause of lease issues with the property owner who wanted target to pay 100,000 more a month - the owners wanted a Chinese supermarket to move in).

Even after the remodel of the store into the chinese supermarket, some of the elements of the Gemco were kept.

http://local.live.com/default.aspx?v=2& ... ene=289490

There is the store today, the market extened the covering from the original 4 colums to 8. The 4 on the right cover the old Target labelscar.
They also enclosed the Garden shop into more shops. inside (i went once) the layout is the same as the old gemco, departments and the food in the back, interesting to see. The restrooms are still in the back as well.

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J-Mac
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Post by J-Mac » 07 Jan 2007 16:36

surfingdude wrote:I remember Granada Hills. It was the 13th Gemco, #514 (there was no #513). The next stores in the LA area were Glendora (#515), Fullerton (#516) and Woodland Hills (#519). Two were opened in No. California around the same time, Sacramento (#517) and Stockton (#518).
Woodland Hills was still operating as a Target the last time I was in the LA area, anyone have info on the others from the late 60's?
Surfingdude: The Fullerton location - which one, I believe there was a "Fullerton" on Harbor (???) and "East Fullerton" which was on Yorba Linda Blvd... I think that was a later store. Anyway, if you come up with any North Orange County locations, I might be able to acquire some current day pictures... to be posted under a new heading.

runchadrun: Nice daytime pictures. I think the damage to the Garden Center sign happened overnight, as I don't recall that when I photographed it. The wind was howling through those high voltage lines above me when I was shooting from the parking lot... lucky for me, though, it didn't rain. I did kinda find it cool to see the red neon underneath the sign, though.

Anyone else: I would like to find a store directory (or listings) for Gemco... if there is one out there. I have a feeling that the 1960s stores with minimal modification (a la Granada Hills) are on short time.

J-Mac

surfingdude
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Post by surfingdude » 07 Jan 2007 17:24

J-Mac: You are correct. The first Fullerton store at 4100 N. Harbor, the second (#541) was at 2920 Yorba Linda Blvd. I would guess the second store was about 10 years later.
I have a list of Gemcos and Lucky Stores from 1986, including all CA, AZ and NV stores. One of these days, I will try to post it. It will take some time!
The Mid-West, Eastern and Texas Gemcos (Memcos) were gone by then.

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TheStranger
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Post by TheStranger » 07 Jan 2007 17:33

Hey, does anyone know if the Target at Alta-Arden Expressway and Fulton Avenue in Arden-Arcade (unincorporated Sacramento County) is a former Gemco? It looks a lot like the former Gemco on Broadway and Riverside but I am not for certain.
http://dtcwrt.earlracing.com/stores/arden.htm

---

Here's a good resource on the chain, BTW:

http://www.royhooper.com/gemco.html
Chris Sampang

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runchadrun
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Post by runchadrun » 07 Jan 2007 18:02

TheStranger wrote:Here's a good resource on the chain, BTW: http://www.royhooper.com/gemco.html
When I learned the Granada Hills store was closing I emailed him to let him know since according to his site he worked there but I got no reply.

Alas, the store dismantling has begun. As of noon today the sign above the entrance consisted of the bullseye and the letters "TA" and the plastic had already been removed from them. There was a cherry picker underneath the overhead sign ready to take the letters off but we've had 20mph winds all day so it was probably wise to wait.

surfingdude
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Post by surfingdude » 07 Jan 2007 19:39

1919 Fulton Avenue, Sacramento was Gemco #531.

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Gemco to Target

Post by J-Man » 07 Jan 2007 19:51

The other Target in Sacramento (Madison at College Oak) was also a Gemco; I used to live right behind it (1976-1978) and I bought all of my gasoline at the Gemco gas station.

Was the Target that used to be on Azusa Ave. in Covina (near where the Wal-Mart is now) ever a Gemco? I know that the other Targets in the area (besides Duarte, which we've already discussed) were either built as Targets from the ground up (Baldwin Park, San Dimas) or converted from non-Gemco stores (Eastland: May Co.; East Pasadena: Fedco; Downtown Pasadena: Robinson's; Eagle Rock: Wards).

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Re: Gemco to Target

Post by Jeff » 08 Jan 2007 01:22

J-Man wrote:The other Target in Sacramento (Madison at College Oak) was also a Gemco; I used to live right behind it (1976-1978) and I bought all of my gasoline at the Gemco gas station.

Was the Target that used to be on Azusa Ave. in Covina (near where the Wal-Mart is now) ever a Gemco? I know that the other Targets in the area (besides Duarte, which we've already discussed) were either built as Targets from the ground up (Baldwin Park, San Dimas) or converted from non-Gemco stores (Eastland: May Co.; East Pasadena: Fedco; Downtown Pasadena: Robinson's; Eagle Rock: Wards).
Negative. The Target (now Burt's Mega Mall for Bikes and Boats) was a Fedmart before.

I have (or had) a closing ad from Gemco in 1986 with all the store listings.
The only 60's era store that I know is still vintage (even has the old sign) is in Downey on Florence and the I-5 / 605. It was a Sams Club for many year (only minor remodeling to the doors) and now a World Of Decor store.

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runchadrun
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Post by runchadrun » 22 Sep 2007 19:14

Amazingly after less than 10 months this store has been torn down and rebuilt from the ground up and is about to reopen. The store's orientation has been rotated 90° counterclockwise so it now faces Balboa. There is still a parking entrance on San Fernando Mission. The structure is 2-level with the lower level as parking. Based on what I can see from the outside the store seems to be the same configuraion as the store at Balboa and Nordhoff, with the escalators at the front right corner of the store with the cafe near the entrance. (I can see the lights for the cafe through the window.) The only indication of its former incarnation as a Gemco is the sign. The bullseye and the letters were taken down in January and put back a few weeks ago. The sheet metal behind the letters was replaced and the post was covered by a square covering so the round post isn't visible. This is similar to what they did to the store in Highland.

I live 2 miles from the store, exactly due east. (Pause as everyone looks up my house on live.local.com). I could see the crane from my street, which had to be big to see it from that far away. I'm just amazed that they were able to demolish the existing store and rebuild it with a 2-level store in 10 months especially given the variance's restrictions on when work could be done. Meanwhile it took 6 months to renovate 6 restrooms at my building at work...

Here are some pictures I took last night in the rain from Trader Joe's across the street. My cell phone camera doesn't have zoom. The Granada Hills specific plan requires new construction to have a mission style look to it, so you couldn't get something modern like the Nordhoff store.

http://homepage.mac.com/runchadrun/groc ... arget1.jpg The cafe appears to be the area to the left of the Target sign. I can't tell if that's an outdoor eating balcony or not. The arches on the left are the parking access.
http://homepage.mac.com/runchadrun/groc ... arget2.jpg The overhead sign is the former Gemco sign.
http://homepage.mac.com/runchadrun/groc ... arget3.jpg The red banner says "now hiring"

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Old Fedmarts

Post by scanman2 » 24 Sep 2007 16:34

I heard that the City of Ontario has finally approved the long planned Wal-Mart Supercenter on Mountain and I-10 just south of the freeway. This was one of the older Fedmarts that had the 3 sided very tall sign. It was divided and Target was there since they came to CA in the late 80's. The left side of the building was a defunt Ralphs Giant then a Super Ralphs, and finally a Ralphs. Facing north in the center is a very old closed Toys 'r' Us. The neighbors that live mostly east of Mountain have been fighting the Wal-Mart for several years saying it will bring traffic and crime. Hello! have you driving down Mountain Ave at 5:00 pm from the 10 fwy? It is already crowded.

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J-Mac
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Post by J-Mac » 24 Sep 2007 19:59

While the new store looks nice, I still have some attachment to that old Gemco look. Oh well, at least I got a chance to photograph it before it was gone (thanks again for that well timed heads up.) I do find it interesting that Target seems to be going more... department-store-esque with these two story stores in what are generally suburban neighborhoods... although the increased parking with a similar overall footprint is an improvement.

So a similar style Gemco-era overhead sign can also be found at Signal Hill (another Target that received a face lift, wall expansion and totally new interior): http://www.flickr.com/photos/7591905@N0 ... 039445811/ and http://www.flickr.com/photos/7591905@N0 ... 039445811/ ... the Signal Hill location features two such signs. Target must have decided to revisit the Gemco stores for remodeling...

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Re: Victorville store

Post by Dean » 25 Sep 2007 03:32

RandallFlagg wrote:They remodeled the Victorville store a year or so ago, but the outlying buildings still have the old orange tile with white stucco above them.
Exactly. Was @ this site last week...and noticed the orange tile on the other bldgs.

runchadrun--thanks for the info on the pharmacy door. Had wondered about that specific entrance.

The La Puente CA location (on Hacienda Bl) had the separate entrance. The site was demolished for a Smith's. Not sure what it is now. Jeff?!

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Re: Victorville store

Post by Jeff » 25 Sep 2007 12:58

Dean wrote: The La Puente CA location (on Hacienda Bl) had the separate entrance. The site was demolished for a Smith's. Not sure what it is now. Jeff?!
It became a Food 4 Less after Smiths withdrew

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