- Associated Press - Friday, November 6, 2015

ACME TOWNSHIP, Mich. (AP) - A new Meijer Inc. store has opened in a Traverse City-area community where the retailer funded a recall campaign in a zoning dispute several years ago.

The store in Acme Township opened Thursday, and is the second in Grand Traverse County. Frank Guglielmi, Meijer senior director of communications, told the Traverse City Record-Eagle that the new store opened with 210 employees, and that 50 more would likely be added in coming months.

The new store was first proposed nearly 15 years ago, the Grand Rapids Press reports. But it faced opposition from some who worried about its environmental impact.

Meijer funded a failed 2007 attempt to recall an anti-growth Acme Township board. State officials fined the company $190,000 for violating campaign laws.

The township board gave approval to plans to open the new store in 2012.

Acme Township Supervisor Jay Zollinger said the township values growth, but wants it “in a nice organized way.”

“We don’t want sprawl,” said Zollinger, who has been supervisor for three years.

The 195,000-square-foot store is about 15 percent smaller than originally planned. It also has a smaller footprint than the county’s other store, which measures 240,000 square feet.

Zollinger said anticipation for the store’s opening had been building, as well as the expectation that other businesses will be drawn in.

“It’s a big deal,” Zollinger said. “It’s a sign of more things to come.”

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