Fort Belvoir commissary opens
New store bigger, meets LEED Silver standards
Col. Angie Holbrook, Fort Belvoir Garrison commander, left; and Joseph Jeu, director and
CEO of Defense Commissary Agency enters Belvoir’s new commissary with
Lt. Gen. Aundre Piggee, Deputy Chief of Staff, Army G-4, March 30, 2017.
By Adrienne Anderson
Excited shoppers stood in line on a cool morning to be the first to shop at the new Fort Belvoir Commissary, which had its grand opening and ribbon-cutting ceremony Thursday.
The new commissary is right next to the Exchange on Belvoir.
“Today and every day, it is our goal to make your shopping experience something you look forward to,” said Joseph H. Jeu, director and CEO of the Defense Commissary Agency. It’s not enough to just have a new facility and low prices, it is our goal to provide you with great customer service.”
The military grocery store, which meets LEED Silver standards, features 82,000 square feet of space, 30,000 more than the one it replaces, which was built in 1981. The store has 33 checkouts, including eight self-checkouts. The $30.8 million project also has a Living Well Corner, for more health-conscious shoppers, with more than 1,500 gluten-free, non-GMO and organic foods.
According to the DeCA, the store annually ranks tops in sales among all stores agency. Last year, sales exceeded $87 million. The construction project was paid with surcharge funds on commissary shoppers’ grocery bill, and not tax dollars.
The commissary serves a customer base of more than 250,000 within 20 miles of Belvoir.
Donna Hill was one of many shoppers waiting to get into to shop.
“It’s going to be more convenient,” she said. “I would rather come here than to go somewhere like a Whole Foods or Fresh Market if they’re in that same realm.”
Although she shops at the commissary, she also visits other off post grocery stores to see what they have. But, with the changes to the commissary to compete with other stores, she said she’d continue shopping on post.
Another shopper, Madeleine Bogdanowicz, wanted to be there for the store’s grand opening and wasn’t disappointed. She said she was amazed by the commissary’s new look.
“It’s so much bigger and better than the old one,” she said.
Col. Angie Holbrook, U.S. Army Garrison Fort Belvoir commander, said Belvoir’s commissary is the top-selling commissary and the largest in the country.
Holbrook joked about the large, three-cart aisles that allow quick shoppers to get in and out, while not bothering shoppers who like to take their time looking at items.
“This is an amazing, state-of-the-art facility and it’s just another reason to choose Belvoir,” Holbrook said. “This is how we make every day better.”