Grand Rapids, Mich.-based Meijer Inc. finally has plans to open a store in the state’s biggest city, Detroit.

Meijer opening first store in Detroit

Courtesy Eight Mile Boulevard Association

Meijer Inc. signed a purchasing agreement in August to be the largest retailer in a new Detroit development called Shoppes at Gateway Park.

The company signed a purchase agreement with developers of the Shoppes at Gateway Park, a 365,000-square-foot retail development, according to Detroit Free Press.

The new store marks not only Meijer’s first venture into Detroit, but also the city’s only big-box grocery retailer. Stores in Lincoln Park and Allen Park, suburbs of the city on its southwest side, are the closest locations.

Meijer’s store is expected to take up 192,000 square feet of the development, anchoring the project. Framingham, Mass.-based clothing retail Marshalls is the only other confirmed retailer, planning to move into 28,000 square feet of space, according to the Free Press.

Meijer plans to start building in May. The entire development is slated to open in 2011, according to the article.

Meijer operates nearly 200 stores in Michigan, Illinois, Kentucky, Indiana and Ohio. The company plans to open a smaller version of its staple stores in Chicago early 2010, according to the Chicago Tribune.