A remodeled Aldi grocery store opened Thursday in Villa Park.
The store, at 400 W. North Ave., celebrated its grand reopening with a ribbon-cutting ceremony. Following the ceremony, the first 100 shoppers received a golden ticket, each containing Aldi gift cards of various amounts.
The remodeled store is part of the Batavia-based company's nationwide $1.6 billion store remodel plan. In total, Aldi intends to remodel 130 stores in the Chicago area by 2020 at an investment of nearly $180 million.
The new Aldi store provides a more modern look with a focus on fresh items, including more produce, dairy and bakery sections. The remodeled stores also feature an updated design, open ceilings, natural lighting and environmentally-friendly building materials, such as recycled materials, energy-saving refrigeration and LED lighting.
As grocers become more competitive, Aldi is expanding across the country with hopes of gaining a piece of the spending pie.
Aldi, known for low prices on its private-label items, plans to spend $3.4 billion over the next five years to open 900 supermarkets, the company said. Aldi, a German discount grocer, made the announcement as its European rival, Lidl, prepares to open its first U.S. stores this month, with plans for as many as 100 by the summer of 2018.
The U.S. expansion by the German private-label giants could put more pressure on conventional retailers like Wal-Mart Stores Inc. and Kroger Co. to lower their prices. The new competition in the low-margin industry arrives during a deflationary spiral that has seen food prices drop for about 17 straight months, the longest such streak in more than 60 years.