“The larger drug chains are continuously purchasing the mom-and-pop shops,” Kerr said, “and in general, it continues not only on the drug end, but with independently owned lumber yards, paint stores and hardware stores. They’re becoming obsolete.”
Kerr said he doubts that Rite Aid will open another store in the Kings Pharmacy space. “I would expect Rite Aid to build a bigger location,” he said. “I believe it’s a matter of time before they find a larger space to expand.”
Harkreader said that Rite Aid is planning to expand its current location after the summer by taking over an adjacent, vacant space in the shopping center. The store will remain open throughout the construction, which should wrap up late this year, he said.
Kerr and others said that the Park Avenue Kings was sold to Venigalla several years ago. Its former owner, Jay Kirschner, was sentenced to 30 months in federal prison in 2011 after auditors said he bilked the New York State Health Insurance Program out of more than $700,000 for cancer treatment prescriptions that physicians denied preparing.