In targeting the urban market, Sobeys needed to break out of the traditional design and food offerings that were reflective of their suburban stores. They had to gain relevance in downtown neighbourhoods by creating a concept store that fulfilled the distinct and often sophisticated needs of time-starved city dwellers – and do it in a significantly smaller urban footprint.


Insights gained from in-depth demographic and psychographic research formed the basis for a targeted strategy that called for the creation of an unconventional, contemporary urban food store. We balanced design with functionality and brought the Urban Fresh vision to life with fresh grass and tree motifs, custom wall graphics, modern, super-sized signage that reinforced the brand, contemporary shelving, impactful lighting, and the focal point – a giant chandelier. Elements like vertical merchandising and scaled-down carts maximized the smaller footprint and showcased an extensive offering of prepared and gourmet food selections.


Sobeys Urban Fresh immediately became the preferred food shopping destination within the community. Attracted by the convenience and romanced by the fresh design, customers were quick to discover that this distinctly different supermarket experience was designed for them and the way they shop. Urban Fresh was as much a gathering place as it was a local market.

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