Deserted Food Emporium to become LA Fitness

By Brandon Gustafson | Dec 27, 2017

After years of vacancy and no apparent plan in sight, there appears to be new life coming to the shopping center at the south end of Mukilteo Speedway.

The plan is for the old Olson’s Food Emporium to become an LA Fitness, according to permit records obtained via Snohomish County.

“Currently, I show that there are a total of four permits issued or in process to renovate the building into a new LA Fitness,” said Evan Reynolds, a Snohomish County records specialist.

The first permit application was received by Snohomish County on May 15 and approved Sept. 28. Construction is ongoing, with renovations to necessities such as roofing and plumbing, according to the permits.

The location was previously at 13619 Mukilteo Speedway, but is now 13624 Highway 99, Suite A, according to Reynolds, who said the address change occurred in the early 2010s.

This will be the first business in the location since The Food Emporium’s closure.

It opened at the end of the Speedway in 1993 and operated until 2010.

The emporium was the last store owned by the Olson family after Morrie Olson sold 12 of his locations to QFC in 1995, and the family operated the final location until its closure in 2010.

In addition to competing with big-chain supermarkets nearby, it didn’t help that location at the south end of Mukilteo Speedway and along Highway 99 was changed when the roadway was realigned back in 2003. That created an overpass, which left the market off to the side of an busy intersection.

It also marked the beginning of the decline of that small shopping center, as some businesses, such as Hollywood Video, closed down as well.

Some businesses moved locations, such as Lombardo’s Pizzeria, which moved from the shopping center to further up the Mukilteo Speedway, close to Kamiak High School and Traxx.

Only a few stores remain such in the shopping center, including Dollar Tree, Subway and Harbour Dental.

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