City re-opens 6400 Lyndale Avenue liquor store
Back on March 25, the City of Richfield temporarily closed two of its municipal liquor stores to limit the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) and make the necessary upgrades to better protect customers and staff. After more than a month of down-time, the city’s 6400 Lyndale Avenue location will reopen at 11 a.m. on May 11.
“Customer health and safety is our primary concern at our city liquor stores,” said Liquor Operations Director Bill Fillmore. “We needed time to make necessary upgrades to two stores and the temporary closure allowed us to keep serving customers at our other stores while the work was done.”
Both the 6400 and 7700 Lyndale Avenue stores were closed in part to ensure adequate staffing was available as Minnesota adapted to a new way of life during its Stay-At-Home order. The stores also needed to obtain Plexiglas partitions at the cash registers and floor marking to encourage social distancing.
Besides the COVID-19 mitigation additions, the store also refreshed and polished the floor. To do this, staff relocated all retail and stacked products, along with movable fixtures, to the basement. The improvements took place on April 22.
“Liquor store employees have put a lot of time and effort in retrofitting their stores to ensure that customers and staff are safe during the shopping and transaction process,” explained Community Health Administrator Jennifer Anderson. “The stores have a good plan in place and customers can rest easy when they are shopping in our municipal liquor stores.”
Throughout the pandemic, Richfield’s municipal liquor stores have been regularly amending its business practices. The stores have established floor markings to demonstrate and encourage social distancing, installed Plexiglas barriers at cash registers, stopped accepting cash as payment for transactions, turned off in-store ATMs, and continually sanitize touchpoints, carts, handles, payment terminals and shopping baskets.
Stores also limit the number of customers inside to six at a time, ask customers who appear ill to immediately leave the store, don't allow employees who do not feel well to come into work, decline all returns or exchanges and suspended the sale of lottery tickets.
“A lot of area liquor stores have closed some of their locations to wait out the public health crisis during Minnesota’s Stay-At-Home order,” remarked Fillmore. “We worked with our community health and public safety partners to find a way to remain open, while remaining safe.”
The city’s remaining shuttered liquor store, located at 7700 Lyndale Avenue, is in the process of receiving a more labor-intensive renovation and aims to reopen in the near future.