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New corner store planned for Riverside

A longtime West Side corner store that's been closed for more than a year is being reopened by a new operator.

Sami Kassem wants to open the Esser Mini-Mart to sell groceries, kitchen supplies, school supplies, and other "normal corner store stuff," but no tobacco or alcohol products, said Anthony James, an architect working with Kassem. The store would be located on the first floor of 187 Esser, which also has four apartment units upstairs.

"This is a legacy corner store," James said.

But the plan, which includes opening up blocked-up storefront windows but no other changes to the building, requires a special-use permit from the Common Council because "the store has been out of operation for more than a year," James said. The Planning Board on Monday recommended approval.

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