Shattuck Walgreens relocates to larger store across street

Shown on the left is the old building that Walgreens used to occupy, and on the right is the new building where they will move.
Carli Baker/Staff
Shown on the left is the old building that Walgreens used to occupy, and on the right is the new building where they will move.

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The Walgreens in the Downtown Berkeley area has relocated directly across the street in an effort to utilize new amenities, better serve residents and be more expansive.

Upon entering the new store, customers are greeted by a fresh produce section, a kiosk to serve fresh-brewed coffee and a pharmacy section complete with an open waiting area.

Store manager Olufemi Oyemakinde said the additional space of the new store — located at 2190 Shattuck Ave. and Allston Way — allows for the expression of the pharmacy chain’s motto, which is to live well, be well and stay well.

According to Walgreens media relations specialist Robert Elfinger, the new space is 16,892 square feet — a nearly 5,000 square-foot addition compared to the old store.

According to Oyemakinde, the old store closed on Friday, and the new store opened its doors to the public Monday after taking only two weeks to be put together.

“It’s amazing,” Oyemakinde said. “Just today itself, I think probably 75 percent of our produce has been depleted by people who have been coming in. The store is doing well, and I am excited for its future.”

Walgreens now includes a college and apartment living section, offering items such as towels, cooking appliances and utensils.

One of the more significant additions to the store is a fresh produce section of fruits and vegetables as well as other fresh foods like sushi and chicken salads.

According to John Caner, CEO of the Downtown Berkeley Association, the produce section is significant because it is a much closer option for residents in the Downtown Berkeley area to buy fresh produce.

Caner added that the new location will positively improve the Downtown Berkeley area because it is right in the “cultural hub” of the area, since it is located next to the Downtown Berkeley BART station.

Elfinger said the store relocated directly across the street on Shattuck Avenue to evade the busier traffic patterns that were present on the side of the street where the old store was located. Moving to the other side of the street allows for easier access to the new location, he said.

According to Elfinger, the opening of the new Walgreens store has been planned for several years, and the decision to move was not influenced by its rivalry with CVS Pharmacy, which has a store location on Shattuck and Durant avenues near the new Walgreens store.

“We will effect a positive change by providing Downtown the options of various healthy foods,” Oyemakinde said. “There are not many places that offer what we have.”

Contact Pooja Mhatre at [email protected]

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  • Cal77

    Berkeley needs a 24 hour pharmacy!!! The city needs to hold their feet to the fire when they want to put in another pharmacy or they want a liquor license or some type of variance. i don’t want to hear that it is too dangerous- they can set it up like a bank drive thru with bullet proof glass and a sliding drawer. The closest 34 hour pharmacy is/was in Alameda! Who wants to try to get to Alameda in the middle of the night?

  • Stalin

    People need to stop buying food at Walgreens.

    You know who you are. And you know there is nothing edible in that store. There are food substances, but there is no food.

  • I_h8_disqus

    Drug store marketing is puzzling. It just doesn’t seem to make sense for direct competitors to locate right across the street from each other than to locate in under represented areas. Any marketing Phds out there who can explain?

  • Guest

    In the photo of the former Walgreens store, the sign above the entrance indicates CVS is moving into that location. Is CVS now going to have two stores in that immediate vicinity?

    • glumbo

      That sign isn’t saying that CVS is moving into there. It says that Walgreens accepts CVS prescriptions or something like that.