Wave Transit to educate riders of nearby grocers in response to fire

Wave Transit to educate riders of nearby grocers in response to fire
(Source: WECT)

WILMINGTON, NC (WECT) - The fire that destroyed a grocery store is now leaving neighbors in a tough spot when it comes to having quick access to fresh groceries.

After a fire destroyed Everybody's Supermarket on Greenfield Street Wednesday, neighbors living nearby are technically left in a food desert. The USDA defines a "low-access community" as at least 500 people and/or at least 33 percent of the census tract's population must reside more than one mile from a supermarket or large grocery store.

But Wave Transit says neighbors in the area have options.

Megan Matheny, who serves as Wave's Deputy Director, says the company can provide education to riders on finding the nearest grocery stores. Wave is not going to change its routes, but Matheny says existing routes can get neighbors to nearby grocery stores.

Matheny says the Cape Fear Housing Coalition creates maps locating food deserts in the area. She says Wave then overlays its transportation routes onto these maps to make sure people living in that area have access to public transportation which can get them to grocery stores and other services.

Neighbors affected by Wednesday's fire can call Wave's Mobility Manager, Vanessa Lacer at (910) 202-2045, to get more information on the best bus route for nearby grocery stores and markets.

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