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Thread: Whole Foods in San Luis Obispo...

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    Whole Foods in San Luis Obispo...

    I know Whole Foods is planning on building in San Luis Obispo, but where they will locate is beyond me right now. The city doesn't have that many natural food stores and it recently is opening another one of the locally owned New Frontiers chain. We also have Scholari's Market but I'm not sure that counts as a natural foods store. They is a spot next to Target that is about the size of a Whole Foods planned to be built, but the name of the store has not been released yet. That spot is in close range of New Frontiers and Scholari's. Would a Whole Foods want to be near these other markets? The other location is in downtown where a market is planned and Whole Foods has been rumored to go there. It's about 15,000 sq. ft. market and would be suitable for a Whole Foods Express. Counting 2 New Frontiers, a Trader Joes, and Scholaris the city has 4 natural food stores with a population of 50,000 population and a 20,000 college students and 12,000 students at the community college. I see the city supporting a small or large Whole Foods. The Whole Foods next to Target would be a new building which Whole Foods likes.

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    Cyburbian Planit's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by urban19 View post
    I know Whole Foods is planning on building in San Luis Obispo, They is a spot next to Target that is about the size of a Whole Foods planned to be built, but the name of the store has not been released yet. That spot is in close range of New Frontiers and Scholari's. Would a Whole Foods want to be near these other markets? The Whole Foods next to Target would be a new building which Whole Foods likes.
    I don't know anything about SLO, but as most other corporations do and from your description, it sounds like WF will build next to Target.

    Think about this, in almost every case nationwide a CVS, Rite Aid, Walgreens are on the same intersection...Three grocery stores are very close together within a block or two of each other...fast food all cluster...they all want to feed off each other and canibalize each other's customers. It what corporations do and generally how they locate, they want to be in each others face.
    "Whatever beer I'm drinking, is better than the one I'm not." DMLW
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    Cyburbian TerraSapient's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Planit View post
    I don't know anything about SLO, but as most other corporations do and from your description, it sounds like WF will build next to Target.

    Think about this, in almost every case nationwide a CVS, Rite Aid, Walgreens are on the same intersection...Three grocery stores are very close together within a block or two of each other...fast food all cluster...they all want to feed off each other and canibalize each other's customers. It what corporations do and generally how they locate, they want to be in each others face.
    This is true, but often there are good reasons a type of business wants to be in a specific location as well, such as distance to target markets, accessibility, infrastructure, etc. Of course, that is stating the obvious in a planning forum I suppose.

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    Cyburbian DetroitPlanner's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Planit View post
    Think about this, in almost every case nationwide a CVS, Rite Aid, Walgreens are on the same intersection...Three grocery stores are very close together within a block or two of each other...fast food all cluster...they all want to feed off each other and canibalize each other's customers. It what corporations do and generally how they locate, they want to be in each others face.
    Classic economic geography problem from college two ice cream men on the beach are trying to capture each other's sales. They end up right next to each other! http://www.geodz.com/eng/d/hotelling...ling-model.htm
    We hope for better things; it will arise from the ashes - Fr Gabriel Richard 1805

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    Cyburbian Rygor's avatar
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    In school I remember it being referred to as the "Law of Equal Advantage". This is why CVS always wants to be located across the street from Walgreen's whenever possible.
    "When life gives you lemons, just say 'No thanks'." - Henry Rollins

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    Cyburbian Raf's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by urban19 View post
    They is a spot next to Target that is about the size of a Whole Foods planned to be built, but the name of the store has not been released yet.
    Target has a non-compete clause in the center. Whole Foods competes with their groceries and other items that they carry (hot foods, retail items, etc.), so more than likely they would not locate there. Whole foods in a suburban areas such as the one you mention (typical box big area, 6 lane arterial, retail development with supporting pads) commands a footprint of roughly 30-45,000 sf. This center could not handle Target and a whole foods (the local architectural review board has already an issue with parking in regards to Target and Olive Garden, so you make the call there).

    Quote Originally posted by urban19 View post
    Would a Whole Foods want to be near these other markets?
    As others as said, yes, but then again, those pesky non-compete clauses. Anchors such as target ensure that their center has additional tenants that would feed off of them, not compete. We are going through this same mess now at Colony Square.

    Quote Originally posted by urban19 View post
    The other location is in downtown where a market is planned and Whole Foods has been rumored to go there. It's about 15,000 sq. ft. market and would be suitable for a Whole Foods Express. Counting 2 New Frontiers, a Trader Joes, and Scholaris the city has 4 natural food stores with a population of 50,000 population and a 20,000 college students and 12,000 students at the community college. I see the city supporting a small or large Whole Foods.
    Scholaris (an independent local grocery chain) is not a natural food store, it is a supermarket that carries some natural food items, but other than that it is a grocery store that is high end on the scale of grocery stores. The college folks and others can support trader joes because it isn't pricey and it ain't expensive. Trader Joe's is out there in the City and students have to go out of their way to shop there and most full time residents whom have a little bit more expendable income shop there for whatever reason (like my family does once every 2 weeks). More times than not they are shopping at Natural Foods because of convenience. It just happens to be where most of the students live. It is why i like buying booze at Albertson's versus Scholaris because 1) it is too expensive at Scholaris even though it is a few blocks from my house but b) the co-eds are mighty fine during the evening .

    There is a reason why Whole "Paycheck" won't locate in San Luis. Our economics don't allow for it. For the high price of housing, you would think the median income would be around 70 to 80K, comparable to other coastal communities in this state. San Luis is around 55K. Pretty low. Grocery stores just don't locate because a certain type of "people" live there. The right economic factors have to be in place in order to have a successful business. San Luis doesn't have them at this time.
    Men do dumb $hit... it is what they do to correct the problem that counts.

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    Okay, I guess were are looking at Whole Foods not locating next to Target. But I also heard they looked into Garden Street Terraces. It would be on the smaller end of Whole Foods store like the one in Mill Valley at about 14,000 sq. ft. and the one in Mill Valley generates $500,000 revenue annually, WOW!

    There are no markets there and it would be in a mix-used development and in a high foot traffic area. I am sure being downtown they are closer to people with big bucks.

    I am not sure, but I heard they already had a permit in for Garden Street Terraces. Also, Fresh N Easy will be opening next year at Village at the Broad.

    It will be two years or more though until we Whole Foods in Garden Street Terraces. Garden Street will start construction mid-time some time next year.

    I emailed Whole Foods real estate agent for our region and they said SLO is still on their radar.

    And ask for Colony Square, I most likely will go to the movie theater if parking is better. I live in Templeton and I'll drive to the closer one or the cheaper one. If they had other stores like a PacSun, then I might be willing to shop there or hang out there.

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    Quote Originally posted by urban19 View post
    Okay, I guess were are looking at Whole Foods not locating next to Target. But I also heard they looked into Garden Street Terraces. It would be on the smaller end of Whole Foods store like the one in Mill Valley at about 14,000 sq. ft. and the one in Mill Valley generates $500,000 revenue annually, WOW!

    There are no markets there and it would be in a mix-used development and in a high foot traffic area. I am sure being downtown they are closer to people with big bucks.

    I am not sure, but I heard they already had a permit in for Garden Street Terraces. Also, Fresh N Easy will be opening next year at Village at the Broad.

    It will be two years or more though until we Whole Foods in Garden Street Terraces. Garden Street will start construction mid-time some time next year.

    I emailed Whole Foods real estate agent for our region and they said SLO is still on their radar.

    And ask for Colony Square, I most likely will go to the movie theater if parking is better. I live in Templeton and I'll drive to the closer one or the cheaper one. If they had other stores like a PacSun, then I might be willing to shop there or hang out there.
    Not to mention Whole Foods was proposed in the Dalidio Ranch Marketplace that included Target.

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    Whole Foods could also take over New Frontier's old location because I heard they do not attend to keep their old store open.

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    Quote Originally posted by urban19 View post
    Whole Foods could also take over New Frontier's old location because I heard they do not attend to keep their old store open.
    You still have to watch out for the non-compete restrictions. I don't know how sophisticated New Frontier's real estate group is, but it is not unusual for a non-complete clause to be left behind at an old location (particularly since Whole Foods would be a direct competitor). In fact, leftover non-compete restrictions on vacant buildings is a major contributor to the problem of unfilled anchors & big-box buildings.

    I'm a little skeptical about the Whole Foods real estate agent actually responding to you, especially since they have a direct market competitor (New Frontier's) in SLO already. I know the Whole Foods corporate real estate/property management folks in Austin personally, and they would not be happy to hear their regional real estate guy is openly discussing contemplated stores (especially in specific centers that may be targeted for negotiations), particularly after what happened to them in Eugene (went through a painful community participation process, only to have steel & cement prices derail the financial feasibility). Their typical M.O. these days is to not say a word publicly, and only limited due diligence discussions with the city (keeping the proposed tenant anonymous), until they have an option contract on a site or sites and have done enough financial & cost projections to know that even if delayed, the financial feasibility remains intact.

    "Oh, that is all well and good, but, voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same way in any country."

    - Herman Göring at the Nuremburg trials (thoughts on democracy)

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    Cyburbian Raf's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by urban19 View post
    Whole Foods could also take over New Frontier's old location because I heard they do not attend to keep their old store open.
    You "heard". From a co-worker: They intend to keep both stores. Makes good business sense because again, a very walkable population with some dispensable income in a good location with no competition. The new location captures more residents from and outside the City because of the regional draw of the center (Costco chiefly) and more families on that end of town.

    Burb Repairman is correct about agents being tight lipped. They won't say anything until something is signed. From there it is just purely speculation to keep a "buzz" going.
    Men do dumb $hit... it is what they do to correct the problem that counts.

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    Quote Originally posted by CPSURaf View post
    You "heard". From a co-worker: They intend to keep both stores. Makes good business sense because again, a very walkable population with some dispensable income in a good location with no competition. The new location captures more residents from and outside the City because of the regional draw of the center (Costco chiefly) and more families on that end of town.

    Burb Repairman is correct about agents being tight lipped. They won't say anything until something is signed. From there it is just purely speculation to keep a "buzz" going.
    The Tribune said they are closing down their old store.

    And I have yet to confirm if they are going int Garden Street Terraces yet or not.

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    I also heard New Frontiers originally planned to go next to Target, so are you sure Whole Foods competes with Target? Whole Foods doesn't seem to compete with Target to me because whole Foods is a high-end market and Target is not.

    And besides Prefumo and Garden Street I have heard of no other locations, but who knows what will turn up. I am sure by this year we will know. After all, Fresh N Easy just announced their plans.

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    moderator in moderation Suburb Repairman's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by urban19 View post
    I also heard New Frontiers originally planned to go next to Target, so are you sure Whole Foods competes with Target? Whole Foods doesn't seem to compete with Target to me because whole Foods is a high-end market and Target is not.
    My experience: a Target that did not sell a significant amount of groceries (i.e. not a Super Target) left a big box for new, larger digs in another part of the city. When they left, they left in place a non-compete restriction on the old building that lists groceries (and a number of other uses). It has now been vacant five years. They don't differentiate between high or low end when it comes to competitors and non-compete restrictions--a grocer is a grocer, whether they are selling Kraft mac & radioactive cheese powder or Uncle Bob's homegrown stoneground organic gluten free wheat noodles with vegan-friendly cheese substitute.

    I'm sure New Frontiers planned to go next to Target just because of the trip generation of Target--good exposure... right up until they found out about the non-compete restriction the developer likely signed in order to make the deal with Target.

    "Oh, that is all well and good, but, voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same way in any country."

    - Herman Göring at the Nuremburg trials (thoughts on democracy)

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    Quote Originally posted by Suburb Repairman View post
    My experience: a Target that did not sell a significant amount of groceries (i.e. not a Super Target) left a big box for new, larger digs in another part of the city. When they left, they left in place a non-compete restriction on the old building that lists groceries (and a number of other uses). It has now been vacant five years. They don't differentiate between high or low end when it comes to competitors and non-compete restrictions--a grocer is a grocer, whether they are selling Kraft mac & radioactive cheese powder or Uncle Bob's homegrown stoneground organic gluten free wheat noodles with vegan-friendly cheese substitute.

    I'm sure New Frontiers planned to go next to Target just because of the trip generation of Target--good exposure... right up until they found out about the non-compete restriction the developer likely signed in order to make the deal with Target.
    Well, it's not confirmed if the current New Frontiers will remain open. We will have to see if they can handle two locations or not. The current store is about the size of an average Whole Foods Market.

    Otherwise I'd imagine Whole Foods will go into Garden Street Terraces.

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    The mayor and one city council member both said that the Garden Street developers mentioned they working to bring Whole Foods to their projects. So I guess it's apparent we won't see them until 2014 when the project is expected to be complete.

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    New Frontiers just announced in the paper as of November 5th they are closing their old location.

    And Whole Foods had plans submitted to them. Who sent them I don't know. But plans were sent right around the time the plans for New Frontiers were announced.

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    The Garden Street Terraces project has up to 19,000 sq. ft. for a market.

    There is also a building of 17,000 sq. ft. near Trader Joes where Whole Foods could go.

    Also, there is a mix-used center under construction near Trader Joes under the name Long-Bonetti Ranch with up to 33,000 sq. ft. of lease.

    Eliminating the store near Target and the old New Frontier's location this is all we have left.

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    Cyburbian Rygor's avatar
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    Maybe you could convince Macy's to go in one of those spaces. You know, an "urban" model.
    "When life gives you lemons, just say 'No thanks'." - Henry Rollins

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