Rumblings at Gowanus Whole Foods Site

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There’s been little action at the Whole Foods site on Third Street and Third Avenue during the past few months, but now workers are in the process of demolishing a vacant warehouse at 190 Third Street. The building is the next-to-last remaining structure Whole Foods needs to level before it has its entire 2.1-acre footprint, which stretches to the east side of the Gowanus Canal, clear. What’s not clear, however, is the status of environmental clean up on the toxically challenged parcel, or when actual building is slated to begin. Whole Foods previously claimed the 68,000-square-foot store would open in spring 2008, but the supermarket’s website presently has a vague opening date to be announced attached to the store description. When we asked how you felt about the grocer’s impending arrival in Brooklyn a couple months ago, the majority of respondents were looking forward to it, albeit with some reservations about the scale and environmental impact. It’ll be interesting to see if public enthusiasm starts to wane if the project gets bogged down for too long.
Poll: People Generally Psyched For Whole Foods [Brownstoner] GMAP
Whole Foods Facing an Uphill Battle in Gowanus [Brownstoner]

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  • I don’t care how long it takes, I’m f*&$ing psyched for some decent food!

  • My wife and I have been waiting for years for this to open, but quite honestly I prefer Fairway now and will probably stick with that regardless if and when the Whole Foods opens…they are just too expensive!

  • I don’t think the delay will have any impact on the popularity of the store as long as it eventually does open.

  • Mr. B –

    Don’t make me call Norman Oder on you. ;) The results of your poll did not have a prevailing sentiment that it would be a boon.

    The actual results of your poll – 141 to 140 – were that more people had concerns about scale and environmental impact.

    I can’t imagine why you’d be trying to spin your own poll.

    Ooo – that sounds like a euphamism.

  • I’m sick of getting parking tickets buying fresh fish in the Slope! Roll on Wholefoods and your parking lot!

  • I think that since Trader Joe’s is going to open before Whole Foods, they are going to lose a lot of business.

    While the two are certainly not one in the same, once Trader’s opens in Brooklyn, many people will be attracted to the low prices and I think will make a lot of tj virgins, hooked. I personally can’t wait.

    I don’t plan to shop at this Whole Foods. For what it is, it’s too expensive, this one is poorly located, and I think they should have made this a model for “green” building considering it’s location near Park Slope and over an industrial wasteland.

    If I want nice, expensive stuff I can go to Union Market or Blue Apron Foods and save a 30 minute walk.

  • 11:04,
    Fair point. We’ve amended to be more accurate. As for spinning our own poll? No comment. Mrs. B is out of town for the week ;)

  • Whole Foods is slow to arrive. With the new Fairway, Fresh Direct, and additional, small mom-and-pop organic grocers, who are they trying to reach?

  • I don’t think there’s a first mover advantage. People will shop there whenever finally opens.

    That said, I’m wondering why they don’t pull out of that site as soon as it’s clear, sell the land, and open up in one of the new high rises going up along 4th ave. (i.e., let someone else worry about construction, and get open sooner.) They could open on the corner of 12th street and 4th and buy the vacant lot across the street to make a parking lot…

  • or better yet, open at the base of one of the atlantic yards buildings.

    it’s more centrally located.

  • 11.44, the short answer is Fourth Ave condo owners, provided they materialize in the current market. As for Trader Joes, the two (TJ and WF) coexist quite merrily in Union Square, and the two Brooklyn outposts are much farther apart. WF’s management is probably a little distracted by the Wild Oats merger – how hard they push for the Gowanus project to go forward probably depends on how well the LES branch (a new condo-driven play) is doing – word is it’s a little, um, quiet.

  • Why do so many people prefer the work “um” when posting.

    Example: “Um, that’s not the way things are.”

    Why not just, um, make your point without the word “um”?

  • maybe because some people have a sense of humor.

  • But the use of the word “um” is not funny.

    (I know, I know, I don’t understand this because I don’t have the sophisticated sense of humor that you do – so, um, sorry!).

  • there you go!

    that was funny!

  • Whole Foods will never open on this site – bet on it

  • I really dont like whole foods. There were 2 in the town I used to live in and I didn’t go to either.

    its gonna look lame too.

  • Whole Foods has just filed their zoning with the DOB last week. It was “disapproved” by the plan examiner on 8/20.

    The demo permits are simpler to get, which is why we see the demo going on just now.

    The real progress that can be seen on the site is the good work of nature.

  • I know this is late but you have no idea the value of Trader Joe’s over Whole Foods. I currently live in DC but am relocating to downtown Brooklyn once my condo in Bell Tell Lofts is completed. I currently have immediate access to both TJ’s & Whole Foods. In comparison Whole Foods is a rip off!!! At Trader Joe’s a $100 usually gives me five bags of quality groceries and they are quality. At Whole Foods I’m lucky if I get two bags of quality groceries. The difference you cannot compare.