Trader Joe's is staging an outright invasion of South Florida these days, and we couldn't be happier about it. First, the crunchy, food-lover mecca announced it would be making a debut in Palm Beach Gardens sometime in 2014, with construction slated to begin in fall of this year.
Then we found out about the Boca Raton location also coming in 2014 to be located at 855 S. Federal Highway, less than five miles from a Publix Greenwise Market, three and a half miles from a massive Whole Foods, and only a half-mile from a Fresh Market.
And, just earlier today, our Miami food blog, Short Order, reported that the first South Florida Trader Joe's will open this October in Pinecrest at 9205 S. Dixie Highway.
All along, rumors had swirled of a Delray Beach store, but as each new location was announced, those rumors seemed increasingly unfounded. Until today...
In a statement in the Sun Sentinel:
"Trader Joe's is our linchpin anchor to propel Delray Place into a lifestyle leasing tenant mix," said Joe Carosella, president of Retail Property Group Inc., the owner and developer of Delray Place. "It's a nationally well known, signature gourmet grocer which will create a regional identity for Delray Place."
To be situated on the southeast corner of Federal Highway and Linton Boulevard, Delray Place seeks to revitalize what is known as the South Federal Highway Corridor.
Only about a mile and a half from the well-known Downtown Delray restaurant district, Delray Place will serve as the southern entrance to the city and will expand accessibility to shopping and dining. Much of the back and forth with the city and residents was over providing sufficient parking for the new retail and dining plaza. Online some residents even speculated that the Trader Joe's rumors were just that, spread to entice the commission into approving the deal.
But the cynics were wrong. Delray Place was finally approved, and locals will soon be sipping on Two Buck Chuck.
Trader Joe's has a loyal following, and locals have long anticipated having a TJ's to call their own, but, the green grocer will not be without competition for shoppers' affections (and dollars).
Just across the street, on the northeast side of the intersection, a Fresh Market is already under construction, and on the northwest corner is a well-established Publix.
Dueling deals on organic produce and ethical steaks? We can only hope.