The Case Against a Hinesburg Hannaford

Responsible Growth Hinesburg was formed in
response to a Hannaford application for a new 36,000 square foot supermarket on Commerce Street (behind Post Office and National Bank of Middlebury). The Hannaford project is proposed on a 4.6 acre undeveloped parcel, which is lot 15 in the Commerce Park subdivision.

In 2009, the Town adopted its first Official Map to identify locations for possible future community facilities within the Village Growth Area, and the Hannaford is proposed for the same location that the Town had identified for a future community facility - more than five years before. The Development Review Board began its review of the Hannaford application at their January 4, 2011 meeting and concluded in October of 2012.

The following are reasons why Responsible Growth Hinesburg believes the proposed Hannaford supermarket is not right for Hinesburg:
  • The proposed 36,000 square foot Hannaford store is 221’ w x 161’deep, dwarfing all nearby buildings. This building does not match the scale of the surrounding neighborhood.  Other large buildings in town are sited in such a way that their bulk is minimized, a standard part of architectural design. (NRG against a hillside, former cheese factory is below road level).
  • The store is proposed for a site 1/2 as large as similar Hannaford stores have been built on before. This has led to a buried stormwater detention (not treatment) system which will raise the entire height of the store and parking lot. 
  • Hannaford would be 3 times as large as the new Kinney Drugs on Route 116, SEVEN times larger than the boxy new Jiffy Mart.
  • Studies show that “big-box” stores cost towns more in municipal services, including police calls and road maintenance, than they produce in tax revenue.  By the time such expenses are incurred, the developer and his checkbook are long gone.****** See local research at
  • If Hannaford is built, Lantman’s will close, reducing access to many local food products from small Vermont producers.  Lantman's stocks over 100 local and Vermont products.  Hannaford does not stock nearly as many through its "local" program.
  • Hinesburg’s traffic consultant reports: “traffic operations in the study area will worsen measurably,” with the store generating up to 30% more shoppers than Lantman's.