LANSING, N.Y.—The Lansing Market will be closing its doors for good at the end of December.

Owner Andy Sciarabba said that the decision to close was at least partially due to the competition of the many stores in and surrounding Lansing — Tops, Target, BJ’s, the soon-to-be four nearby Dollar General locations and the Aldi’s that opened this past fall.

“After 11 years of trying to make the store successful profitability-wise, it became time to decide what we were going to do moving forward and closing the store was probably the only option we had at this time,” he said.

The store has served the community both as a local grocer and an employer for about 30 employees, both part- and full-time, including local high school and college students.

“We feel bad for the employees, the patrons and customers we’ve had loyally over the years but we had no choice,” Sciarabba said, adding that when the market first opened, the only competition was the Tops near the Shops at Ithaca Mall and the (since closed) P&C in the Cayuga Shopping Center.

Over the last year or so, Sciarabba said, the search for a buyer has turned out a few prospects but has ultimately been unsuccessful.

“It’s hard to find independent grocers these days — most of the bigger chains expand in the areas and drive independent grocers out of business, which is part of our situation,” he said.

Sciarabba said that every year, the market has seen between a 10% and 15% decrease in sales, plus an additional hit every time another store with groceries opens nearby.

Once the store closes at the end of the month, the search for a buyer will continue. “Once we close it down the equipment will still be there, so if we can find someone who can reopen a store, that’s what we’d like to do because we still think that there’s a need for a store, but otherwise we’ll try to find another tenant for the building,” he said.

Tompkins County Legislator Mike Sigler, who represents Lansing, said the store closing is a great loss to the community.

“It was the local market and it was always great to see kids back from college or just folks who had worked there for years,” Sigler said. “I was in there probably three times a week. It will leave a hole in the community.”

Zoë Freer-Hessler

Zoë Freer-Hessler is a general assignment reporter for the Ithaca Voice. She has covered a wide range of topics since joining the news organization in November 2021. She can be reached at zhessler@ithacavoice.com...