SARASOTA, Fla. – After meeting Thursday, Dec. 17, the Sarasota County Planning Commission unanimously voted to recommend approval to Sarasota County Commissioners next month for a new 40,000-square-foot Whole Foods Market in North Sarasota on the corner of University Parkway and Honore Avenue.
The North Sarasota location will be larger than the current store in downtown Sarasota and will include prepared foods, salad and soup stations, a juice bar, bakery and more.
“The success of the downtown store and the overwhelming support for this brand in the marketplace is driving the company to include their full brand amenities at this new location,” said Jeff Garrison, partner at S.J. Collins Enterprises, the developer of the project.
S.J. Collins Enterprises will also bring Wawa to the center through a joint partnership with Brightwork Real Estate. Additionally, Zoe’s Kitchen, a Mediterranean fast-casual restaurant has already signed a lease, and another six spots are available for boutique retail shops and/or fast-casual restaurants.
Salaries at Whole Foods average about $40,000 per year, and a store this size will employ approximately 140 people and local subcontractors to help build the store.
The first major retailer in the U.S. to offset 100 percent of its energy use with wind energy credits, Whole Foods’ downtown Sarasota, Fla. location received a Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Silver Certification from the U.S. Green Building Council.
That store was the first-ever environmentally friendly supermarket designed in accordance with the LEED Green Building Rating System®. Additionally, as of March 2010, the grocer had about 10 LEED-rated stores. The North Sarasota store will be Green Globes certified, a similar and newer certification.
“We are extremely excited to showcase the Whole Foods full brand of conveniences and highlight the green mission at this new location in Sarasota,” said Kelly Mills, project manager for Whole Foods Market.
Once approved by the Sarasota County Commission in January 2016, the developer will break ground in March 2016 for an estimated completion in the summer 2017.
“Demographics show that Whole Foods’ customers are travelling from Lakewood Ranch, north Sarasota and Manatee County to shop at the downtown store,” said Garrison. “This new location will prevent that traffic from congesting the downtown roadways and has a regional draw. It’s close to the interstate and other already-established shopping, and it has excellent neighborhood accessibility.”
About S.J. Collins Enterprises
S.J. Collins Enterprises is the joint-venture developer of the Marketplace at Tech Center. Founded in 2007, S.J. Collins Enterprises is a privately held, commercial real estate development firm that has acquired and developed more than 45 retail, mixed-use, multi-family and office projects throughout eight Mid-Atlantic and Southeastern states. The company is headquartered in Fairburn, Ga. and currently has four major retail developments in Virginia.