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UPDATE: According to, the ribbon-cutting for the store will be Tuesday, Sept. 10.

The walk to buy alcohol is about to get a lot shorter.

A new state liquor store is expected to open later this month on 43rd and Chestnut streets. It will be a “premium” store — the first of its kind in West Philadelphia. As a premium store, it will not sell smaller sized items and will offer a greater variety of products.

The opening comes after much anticipation. Construction on the spirits shop was approved in June 2012, but the state did not sign a lease on the store until April.

Once the lease was signed, the store was expected to open in mid to late summer. The slight delay is a result of outfitting the store — a process that usually takes three to five months, according to Spruce Hill Community Association zoning official Barry Grossbach.

“They’re just waiting for the final okays,” Grossbach said. “It will happen.”

Related: Liquor privatization effects on campus uncertain

The store’s opening hasn’t always been so certain. The proposal for the spirits store was initially denied in April 2012. It faced opposition from the neighboring Muslim community, many of whom worship at the Masjid al-Jamia mosque on 43rd and Walnut streets.

The University City District has been alerted of the opening. Security patrols and Penn Police will be near the area to ensure that it’s a safe location, Grossbach added.

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