Construction will be ramping up at the Northtowns Plaza on Western New York's first Whole Foods Market. If all goes according to plan, the 50,000 square-foot store should be open in 2017.
Jim Fink, who follows local development issues for Business First, believes the arrival is another sign of a positive local economy. He calls Whole Foods "one of the most coveted, most sought-after retailers," one that has over 400 stores nationwide and enjoyed over $14 billion in sales in 2015.
""Five, ten, fifteen years ago, I don't think we had the demographics that would have indicated we could have supported a Whole Foods." Fink believes planners have noted the success of the nearby Trader Joe's on Niagara Falls Boulevard, and the growth of Wegman's and Tops in the local market.
According to a statement from Whole Foods, the grocery chain wants to "join the positive momentum that the Buffalo Niagara region is experiencing."
Northtowns owner WS Development is looking transform the plaza with Whole Foods as a central draw. Officials say they are looking to add regional and national retailers and eateries to the Sheridan Drive location.