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Austin H-E-B

H-E-B Preserves, Celebrates Site History in New Location

West Austin store will feature memorabilia and bricks from original café and music venue
Lynn Petrak, Progressive Grocer
H-E-B Austin
H-E-B recently broke ground on a new Texas location in the Hill Country of west Austin.

H-E-B is taking care to preserve local history as it develops a new store near Austin. The Texas retailer recently began construction on a site in West Austin that used to be home to the locally-beloved Nutty Brown Café & Amphitheatre.

While that business has moved to another nearby spot and will reopen as Round Rock Amp in April, its history will be kept alive in the new H-E-B through the repurposing of some original building materials and displays of memorabilia and images. “It means a lot to me that H-E-B cares enough about the history at Nutty Brown and plans to pay homage to it in some way,” said Mike Farr, owner of the Nutty Brown Café & Amphitheatre. “I value the way H-E-B has treated me and my business over the last several years. They’ve been amazing partners to work with. I live a few miles down the road, and it’s a surreal concept to think that a place I’ve walked into and owned for two decades is now where I’m going to buy milk and bread. But I’m excited to see it and excited to be a part of it.”

When it opens next year, the 103,000-square-foot H-E-B will reflect the community in other ways, including an exterior that evokes the vibe of the Hill Country. The plans also call for native trees and large windows for optimal views and natural light.

As with other H-E-B stores, this location will include a full-service bakery and tortilleria, service deli, beer and wine department, organic food assortments, floral area, pharmacy and a slew of locally-sourced products. Among those local items: a line of bakery items from the Skull & Cakebones brand that won the grand prize at H-E-B’s Quest for Texas Best competition in 2017.

“At H-E-B, we work hard to tailor our stores to create an experience that’s unique for our neighbors and customers,” explained Cathy Harm, H-E-B group VP, Central Texas. “We are proud to be a part of this community, and it’s important to us that we do our part to preserve and showcase the heritage and history of such an iconic landmark.”

The West Austin H-E-B will be located at Country Road 163 and Highway 290 and is expected to be complete sometime in spring 2023. It’s a busy construction season for the retailer, which broke ground on a Dallas-area store earlier this month.

With approximately 400 stores in Texas and Mexico, San Antonio-based H-E-B is No. 13 on The PG 100, Progressive Grocer’s 2021 list of the top food and consumables retailers in North America.

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