In 1937 the Andrew Williams Store was built at the southeast corner of MacArthur Blvd. and Broadway. One of the first supermarkets in California, it was also one of the nation's first supermarkets with a dedicated parking lot. The supermarket's 60' tower was a landmark, with a mile of neon lights on the tower and storefront. The building was designed by Douglas Dacre Stone and Lou Mulloy. 2
In 1947, a unique Kaiser-Frazer showroom was built in the corner of the parking lot close to the MacArthur / Broadway intersection. It is possible that this showroom was subsequently used as a flower stand, although that remains unconfirmed at this point.
The Andrew Williams supermarket became a Mayfair supermarket in the 1950s, but was demolished in 1964 for the MacArthur-Broadway Center.
“C’mon kids … let’s go to Mayfair!” Yes!! The Mayfair market was awesome ... with the best Jersey and Guernsey milk, imported chocolates and the most incredible salami from Denmark wrapped in gold foil.
"The MacArthur-Broadway Center contained a new Mayfair (26,000 square feet), which opened in September 1964. The grand opening grand prize was a trip to the 1964 World's Fair in New York. After the old Mayfair/Andrew Williams store was demolished, the remainder of the shopping center was built on its site. The MacArthur/Broadway Center opened in September 1965." 1
The MacArthur-Broadway Center was built by Edmond E. Herrscher, a Mayfair supermarket chain board member.
Links and References
- MB Center Broadway and West MacArthur Blvd. Oakland, CA Groceteria
- Andrew Williams Store Architect and Engineer 1947
- Andrew Williams Super Market Opens Oakland Tribune March 19, 1937
- OpenSFHistory / wnp100.00774 OpenSFHistory.org