Following a year of construction and preparation, the new Redner’s Warehouse Market in Milford has finally opened for business.

Following a year of construction and preparation, the new Redner’s Warehouse Market in Milford has finally opened for business.

“There were people outside waiting to get in at 7:30 this morning,” store director Jeff Huber said a few hours after official the grand opening Wednesday morning. “We’ve been swamped beyond belief all day. The interest from the community has been tremendous.”

Hundreds of people also attended an open house at the new grocery store off of southbound U.S. Route 113 Tuesday evening, during which guests were treated to a sneak peek of the new store, as well as plenty of product samples.

“I’ve been to the Redner’s in Dover before and I’ve been waiting for this place to open for a while,” Milford resident Leroy Whitehead said. “It’s a really nice store with one heck of a good supply. If you can’t find your dinner here, you won’t find it anywhere.”

Susan Patton of Milford said she’s excited to have a new grocery store just five minutes from her home.

“I’m tickled to death,” she said after walking the aisles. “So far I see a lot of variety and some really good deals. I’m very pleased.”

The 48,500-square-foot grocery store features nine regular checkout lanes, four self-checkout lanes and two express lanes, as well as a full-service deli, and fresh produce, meat and seafood, as well as a frozen food section, a dairy aisle and health and beauty aids. Other amenities include $1 Redbox DVD rentals, Western Union money services, pre-paid/long distance phone cards and gift cards

Huber said some of the Redding, Pa.-based chain’s most popular offerings include its regular five-for-$20 deal on meats and the Pump Perks fuel discount program, which offers a 10-cent discount on a gallon of gas, up to 20 gallons, at the Sunoco gas station at 264 N. Rehoboth Beach. Unlike the Redner’s in Dover, however, there are no plans to add gas pumps at the new Milford location.

“We’re very aggressive in our everyday pricing,” Huber said of the store’s biggest draw. “We offer the lowest prices possible every day. I think people also will find that our service levels are second to none.”

The staff at the new store includes 152 full- and part-time positions, only about two dozen of which have been filled by transfers from other Redner’s.

“Our human resources department set up a hiring center in Dover in March and we received close to 4,000 applications,” Huber said, adding that one of the reasons so many people were interested in a winning a job at Redner’s might be the company’s private stock ownership program.

“It’s probably the greatest benefit of working for the company and I think it’s why we have a lot of long-term employees,” he said. “We’re also both American- and employee-owned and not a lot of companies can say that anymore.”

A few of the store’s first customers said the employee ownership is one of the things that drew them to the new Milford location.

Neesha Farrington and Nikki Cooper, both of Houston, said they’re hoping those employee benefits translate into good customer service.

“I think it means the employees will be friendlier and take more pride in their work,” Cooper said.

Huber said he’s hoping the community’s excitement from the store’s opening translates into loyal customers.

“Aside from sales, one of the ways we will measure our success in the first few weeks will be the comments we receive from our customers,” he said. “The only way we’re going to grow is from people talking about their good experiences shopping here.”