Cost Cutter to close its two Bellingham grocery stores

Cost Cutter is closing its two grocery stores in Bellingham, one on Meridian Street and the other in the Sunset Square shopping center, later this year, according to the stores’ parent company, The Markets LLC.

An Aug. 16 news release from The Markets said Cost Cutter is transitioning away from large-scale stores that were once mainstays of the supermarket company, citing a shift in customer preference toward smaller grocery locations that are easier to navigate.

The Cost Cutters are two of Bellingham’s largest grocery stores, as well as the two largest in the Cost Cutter chain. The Meridian location comprises 73,000 square feet; the Sunset Square store is 67,000 square feet. Both were built more than 20 years ago.

The stores will stay open while they sell off inventory. Their employees will be placed in other stores, according to union contracts and job availability, The Markets said, although specific details were not made available.

Cost Cutter has two other locations, one in Blaine and one in Ferndale. The Markets operates a variety of other grocery stores in Whatcom County and around western Washington, including three locations under The Markets name and a Food Pavilion in Lynden.

A new retail tenant, whose identity was not disclosed, will move into the Meridian store once it closes, according to The Markets.

Safeway Inc. will take over the Sunset Square location’s pharmacy. Cost Cutter’s current pharmacy customers will be able to transition to the Safeway pharmacy without service interruption, The Markets said.

The current Cost Cutter pharmacy staff will remain with Safeway after the Sunset Square location closes.

The Markets has no further comment on the closures at this time, according to the company’s news release.

Evan Marczynski, staff reporter for The Bellingham Business Journal, can be reached at 360-647-8805, Ext. 5052, or

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