It’s no secret that CVS has plans on moving to the 700 block of Main Street in Clarion. And along with that, it’s no secret that there are two sides as to whether or not the move would be a detriment.
While some community members, including some petition signers on change.org believe the move would cause Main Street to be a ghost town, I believe the move would attract more consumers to the area.
The way the current CVS on the 600 block of Main Street is set up is quaint, but there could be more to make it more appealing.
The move would make the store much larger than its current location. Being the only big retail drugstore in downtown Clarion, people would have to come there for convenience sake.
What Clarion has been trying to do in recent years is revitalize Main Street to make it the toast of the town again. This move would help with that mission, along with the Main Street suites.
Imagine being a student at the university who will live in one of these new suites, and you need something from CVS, like cold medicine or aspirin. Wouldn’t it be more beneficial to downtown Clarion if you walked down the street instead of driving to the outskirts of town to say, Walmart? I think so.
Also, let’s look at two of the properties planned to be purchased and demolished with this move, the former KFC (and to a lesser extent, Krispy Krunchy Chicken) building and the white house beside it that was once Zeller’s Music.
If anything, taking these two structures out and replacing them with one larger store would be much less of an eyesore than just leaving them there and having your fingers crossed, hoping someone will occupy them.
With that McDonald’s right across the street dominating the fast food market, no one in their right mind would want to put in a competing fast food chain where KFC once stood.
Sure, this would add to the amount of “big, corporate” retailers to an area that once was dominated by local mom-and-pop shops, but could having a corporate drugstore necessarily be a bad thing? Drugstores are essential to a town’s structure.
Perhaps the only big drawback to CVS’ plan is the demolition of the Arnold/Weaver house, which has the Designing Minds Salon and Day Spa and a lot of history connected to the area.
Personally, I don’t believe CVS needs to extend that far to make that big of an impression in town. If you think about it, .99 acres is a lot to work with, even with an extended parking lot.
And let’s face it, Clarion still needs its historical value, no matter how beneficial moves like this will be.