No-frills grocer Aldi is beefing up its presence in the Charleston area.
The Germany-based chain plans to add a 12,000-square-foot store at North Main Street and E. 9th North St. in Summerville, just down the street from Earth Fare.
The town is reviewing recently submitted plans for its second Aldi supermarket on what is now a vacant lot near Colonial Park Apartments. A spring 2019 opening is planned.
The penny-pinching store is known for requiring customers to insert a quarter to retrieve a shopping cart and then allowing them to get the quarter back when the cart is returned to its portal. Also, it does not provide shopping bags. It offers a variety of products, mostly under its own label, as well as fresh produce.
The town's first Aldi — and the first in the Lowcountry — welcomed customers in 2015 on Dorchester Road, across from the new Lowes Foods store that opened last fall in the redeveloped Oakbrook Station Shopping Center.
Aldi has one other store in the region — in Mount Pleasant. It opened last year.
Aldi looks at a variety of factors when selecting locations, according to Salisbury division vice president Krysta Cearley.
They include population density, proximity to competition, cost of property and traffic patterns.
"We want to be conveniently located for our growing customer base," Cearley said.
The grocery chain currently has 1,600 stores in 35 states and plans to grow to 2,500 stores by 2022.