|This is just a picture of a fairly typical newer Publix, this one happening to be an early 2015 opened store.
Virginia will be the 7th state for Publix to be opening stores in. So far, Publix has announced the locations of two Virginia stores - a store in Bristol, VA (close to the VA/TN state line), and a store in Glen Allen, a northern suburb of Richmond. Publix has been creeping into the northern cities of Eastern Tennessee and North Carolina over the last few years, so it makes sense that Virginia has been on the radar. According to Publix, they've been scouting out potential sites for stores in Virginia for the last two years, beginning right around the time the first of the North Carolina stores began to open in early 2014. I'm surprised Publix has only announced two new stores for Virginia as a part of their entrance announcement. When Publix entered North Carolina, they announced about 5 or 6 stores as a part of their entrance into that state. It's also interesting that they decided to jump all the way up to Richmond initially, and didn't stick to only Southern Virginia at first (Bristol, Roanoke, Danville, Hampton Roads). Wegmans is opening their first new stores in Richmond later this year, so Publix probably wanted to get into Richmond soon before Wegmans became too established. The Bristol store is expected to open in late 2017, and the Glen Allen store is planned to open in early 2018.
Virginia won't be the end of Publix's expansions. I don't know if they would want to go any farther north from Virginia and possibly into Maryland, but that would probably be a long time off if it were to occur. Publix's next expansions will probably bring them into into areas further west and northwest of their current store base. Publix is showing no signs of stopping, and I'm sure there will be more announcements of expansions coming from them in the coming months and years.
If you want to read more about Publix's current plans for entering Virginia, you can read their official press release here, and Supermarket News also has a good article, which you can read here.
Until the next time,
The Albertsons Florida Blogger