SPARTANBURG, S.C. (WSPA) For south side residents like Jannie Mick, the Piggly Wiggly grocery store helps her avoid spending all afternoon on a bus just to go grocery shopping. 

“Hardship,” said Jannie Mick, Spartanburg resident. “Because if they didn’t open, we would still be going about our business but we would struggle.”

While catching a bus to get groceries comes with challenges, maybe the biggest challenge of all is the lack of routes to grocery stores.

“So many people on the south side of town do not have transportation and they rely on this store for walking back and forth,” said Ruth Littlejohn, Spartanburg city council district 3 representative. “However there are two other grocery stores that are less than 4 miles down the road, you have Ingles and you have Walmart. However there is no bus route that goes in that direction.”

The store opened last August after the city put forward $300,000 and the Mary Black Foundation donated $600,000. Therefore it’s a big financial loss for both the city and foundation, but arguably an even bigger loss for residents.

Without the Piggly Wiggly, the south side of Spartanburg will revert back to a food desert.

“It’s going to be hard for people that don’t have a car, very hard because I’m in that category,” said Mick. 

As one of the first advocates for the opening of this store, district 3 city councilwoman Ruth Littlejohn said she’s among the heartbroken.

“I am really devastated because it took us 3 years,” said Littlejohn. “To get this store here. And we were in a food desert during that time. And now to lose it, is very upsetting…and I have really been hurt by this. Because I know how it is going to hurt and affect my constituents.”  

Moving forward she hopes the city can work together to find a solution.

Piggly Wiggly and the city of Spartanburg said an official closing date has not been announced yet.