Whole lotta love for Whole Foods — but will chain come to Boynton Beach?


A choice piece of land near Boynton Beach could soon become the site of a new grocery store. Will it be Whole Foods Market ?

Owner 13th Floor Investments , a Miami-based firm, isn’t saying, for now.

But residents near the property at the northeast corner of Boynton Beach Boulevard and Jog Road say they’ve heard whispers Whole Foods is interested.

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The vacant site is a central location in Palm Beach County, and there is no Whole Foods nearby.

Whole Foods has standard-sized stores in other parts of the county, such as in Wellington, West Palm Beach, Palm Beach Gardens and Boca Raton.

In addition, the grocery store is building a new concept in east Delray Beach, set to open in 2019. 365 by Whole Foods Market is smaller than a regular Whole Foods store and less expensive, featuring more products with the company’s generic brand.

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David Resnick, 13th Floor vice president, said his company bought the 16-acre property west of Boynton Beach a year and a half ago.

The land was one of several assets once belonging to developer John Kennelly. He built several residential communities, including building the Estates of Boynton Waters and the Enclave of Boynton Waters.

He also built the Publix-anchored Fountains of Boynton shopping center at the northwest corner of Boynton Beach Boulevard and Jog Road. The property was sold following a Chapter 11 reorganization by Kennelly in 2017.

Kennelly sold other properties, including the vacant parcel that 13th Floor picked up.

Resnick said 13th Floor is looking to do a mixed-use type of development on the site. Resnick confirmed interest in a grocery store, but he said he couldn’t comment yet about specific tenants.

“We’re looking at a variety of retailers. A grocer. A gas station. Some restaurants,” he said. “We’re out there exploring the markets and getting interest from different tenants to see what we can piece together, so we can deliver a product everybody is happy with.”

In addition to stalwarts such as Publix, other grocery stores continue to expand or enter the Palm Beach County market, especially boutique grocers.

Aldi and its sister grocery store, Trader Joe’s, have locations throughout the county. Kroger’s is entering the market through its Lucky’s organic grocer brand, with locations slated for Delray Beach, west of Boca Raton and east Boca Raton.



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