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Aug 3, 2012 7:21 AM by AP

Aid to help Katrina-struck store re-open

NEW ORLEANS (AP) - A landmark New Orleans food store that hasn't re-opened since Hurricane Katrina hit nearly seven years ago is getting financial help as it works to make a comeback.

New Orleans officials announced Thursday that the Circle Food Store will receive a $1 million loan from the city's Fresh Food Retailer Initiative, a program started last year to expand access to healthy, affordable food in low-income areas.

The initiative is funded through federal grant money and by the nonprofit Hope Enterprise Corporation.

Half the loan will be forgivable, according to a news release from Mayor Mitch Landrieu's office.

Also, the store is to receive a $100,000 city grant.

Landrieu's statement said the store was first incorporated in 1938 and was the city's first store operated and owned by African-Americans.

Photo curtesy of nola.com and The Times Picayune

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