German grocer ‘Lidl’ could make big impact in Millsboro

Date Published: 
July 14, 2017

They may have recently wrapped up their most successful Fourth of July celebration at Cupola Park in years, but for the town of Millsboro, the fireworks are just getting started.

At the regularly scheduled town council meeting on Monday, July 3, the council approved the preliminary site plans to add German grocer Lidl to the growing list of new businesses bound for Millsboro that so-far include: Lewes Dairy, Farmer’s Bank, Royal Farms, Chick-fil-a and more.

Lidl, a global retailer priding themselves on “customer satisfaction” and “superior quality for the lowest price possible” as top priority has been compared to American chains Whole Foods and Trader Joe’s. Now expanding their U.S. presence under the tagline “Our roots are European, but our vegetables are grown here,” Lidl is being eagerly anticipated in communities around the country.

Millsboro Town Manager Sheldon Hudson said bringing in Lidl would fall directly in line with the council’s vision for future development.

“We’re very excited about it,” he said. “This has definitely been something we’ve had on our wish list for a while.”

While plans were still in preliminary stages, Hudson went on to explain that if the process went smoothly, final approval could be made later this summer for Lidl to begin construction opposite Peninsula Crossing on Route 113.

The hope from town officials is to not only add another grocer option for a diversifying demographic of Millsboro residents but to continue to bring more employment options as well.

“That’s a big part of council’s mission, is to see employment growth,” Hudson said. “They’re continuing to stay proactive in their push to make the town not only a more attractive place to visit but also to live.”

With the proposal to raise maximum heights in the commercial zone along Route 113, more hotels could be the next item potentially checked off of the council’s “Big Three” wish-list surrounding economic expansion.

“The goal is to make the town more attractive to hotel developers, so we’re looking at how to make that happen,” Hudson explained of the plan to increase the building height cap from 35 feet to the 50- to 55-foot range, to be able to draw larger hotel chains and better accommodate venues and events such as the Little League Softball World series.

The council is also exploring the possibility of easing billboard restrictions to allow “grandfathered” businesses to annex into town limits and potentially bring even more retail employment options to the town.

But while the continued news of expansion and development may be making a new name for Millsboro, the council is equally determined to honor its past.

“That’s the neat thing about Millsboro, is you have 113, but then you have the history of the downtown area — it doesn’t have to be an either/or situation,” Hudson explained.

“We’re really excited about the future. We also see preserving the town’s history as an important component to downtown revitalization.”

For more on new happenings in Millsboro, or for a full list of upcoming events, check out the Town’s new website at www.millsboro.org.