Family-owned market in L.A.'s Westlake district to undergo healthy transformation to better serve community

WESTLAKE DISTRICT, LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- Lupita's Corner Market, a family-owned business at 3rd Street and Lucas Avenue L.A.'s Westlake District for nearly 30 years, is about to receive a complete transformation.

The L.A. Food Policy Council selected Lupita's for the makeover as part of its Healthy Market Network - a program that helps small local markets bring in healthier options to their customers, while remaining profitable for the retailers.

"To know that there is support, that my family's legacy is going to continue, that I'm going to be helping people, that is something I pinch myself every night, I'm completely grateful," said Luz Arango.

Arango is second-generation. She now runs the corner market, but her mom is the one who got it all started.

"She was like an old-school entrepreneur, living the American dream," she said.

When you look around the store, you'll notice that it can use a little help - and the market about to get that help from the L.A. Food Policy Council.

Roughly 70% of the project is funded through design and construction work from partners like Gensler Los Angeles and Build Group SoCal. Luz said the makeover will allow her to better serve the Westlake community, including its youth.

"In the past, the options that they've had are like chips and soda and nacho cheese and all these things that are not healthy for you," Arango said. "But believing in our dream and believing in why it's important to bring more options, that's why with the remodeling, this is going to change completely."

Arango's family is raising the remaining funds through a GoFundMe campaign to help finish the exterior facade improvements.

Arango said this market wasn't always a part of her own plan growing up, but it is now.

"I'm proud. I'm proud of where I come from, I'm proud of my mother, I'm proud of my family, I'm proud of my culture. I'm proud of the people that live here, the people that come here, and to feel the support of our community that believes in us," Arango said.

The groundbreaking is set for early August with a re-grand opening to follow Sept. 12.
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