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Whole Foods Market Still 'Committed' to Parsippany

Despite the controversy of Waterview tract proposal, natural foods retailer remains focused on bringing its store to the township.

Whole Foods Market's stated intention to bring one of its organic foods groceries to Parsippany hasn't gone over well with a lot of the township's residents. But the company said its desire and excitement to set up a Par-Troy branch is ongoing.

“Since our announcement in July, Whole Foods Market remains excited to bring a store to the residents of Parsippany," spokesperson Michael Sinatra told Patch. "As our region is based in New Jersey, we’re thrilled at the opportunity to expand our offerings within the state as we’ve hoped to join the Parsippany community for a number of years."

The company's goal is to open its doors in 2015. The concept now being considered by the Parsippany Planning Board, is for RD Realty to develop 26 acres of Waterview Plaza for the market, other retailers and a townhouse residential community.

Many residents have complained and some have suggested that Whole Foods use an existing vacant commercial space for its new location. But Sinatra defended the market's choice in site.

"Certainly we consider go into existing spaces," he said, dismissing the notion that Whole Foods only starts from scratch when opening new stores. "In about two years, we're opening a location in Morristown on Washington Avenue in a building that was an A&P [supermarket]."

Sinatra said "customization" of the site is what makes it Whole Foods' own, whether a new store appears in a newly constructed building or in an existing structure. And he said the company studied the possibility of going into one of Parsippany's many vacant commercial buildings.

"We looked at many possibilities; we've been interested in getting into Parsippany for a long time," he insisted, noting that the Waterview Plaza property "makes the most sense for us." 

"This site provides us with the best opportunity to support local communities, provide numerous career opportunities for local residents and perhaps most importantly, offer a wide variety of natural and organic foods for our neighbors," Sinatra said. "While we are aware that the community and property developer have been in continuous discussion, we remain committed to working with them and town officials on this project.

"We understand that this is a process."

Dave Phillips January 16, 2013 at 02:17 AM
It makes the most sense for Parsippany and it's residents if Whole Foods moves into existing retail space or not at all.
Wilnj January 16, 2013 at 12:23 PM
The reality is that Whole Foods sees itself as a high-end retailer. Just as Mercedes Benz dealer isn't going to set up shop next door to Sam's Used Car Lot, Whole Foods is not interested in setting up shop in the many available, run down or outdated retail centers in town. I agree that the residential component is unattractive, nor am I a fan of paving over the entire town so that Mountain Lakes and Boonton Township can stay wooded, but the reality of the Parsippany economy is that we are one of the main retail and commercial centers of Morris County and should continue to ensure that sector grows. If the township leadership were truly interested in being leaders, they should work with the other retail centers along Rt. 46 to provide incentives to consolidate and allow for an existing site to completely remake itself. The site at Parsippany Blvd and Rt. 46 lends itself best to this.
Kimberly Kirstein January 16, 2013 at 12:37 PM
Wil, the Whole Foods in West Orange has thrived in a site that is decidedly not high end, flanked by a KMart, Wendy's and Dollar Tree. I don't see why it couldn't be just as successful in the old Michaels location off of route 46 which is a comparable space.
Roberta Chopko January 16, 2013 at 12:42 PM
Most of the residents involved in this controversy are not objecting to Whole Foods' commitment to open a store in Parsippany. It is their choice of location that is objectionable. Perhaps it is time Whole Foods listens to the "people in the community" they purport to service, rather than to the developer and the politicians.
bagofjoy January 16, 2013 at 01:27 PM
Im for Whole Foods at the proposed location. Lets fill the other building with a White Castle to make it a totally productive commercial location.
Wilnj January 16, 2013 at 02:02 PM
Fair point Kimberly. I'd like to see them come to Parsippany, we're not in a position to turn away sources of revenue. Again, I'd like to see the leadership shepherd Whole Foods into an appropriate location elsewhere in the township rather than the game of chicken that I expect will play out here, where the proposal on the table is squashed and WF just chooses to go elsewhere.
Pete January 16, 2013 at 02:42 PM
How about a thrift shop ? Or a used-car dealership, with all those plastic pennons snapping in the breeze ?? Either of those would appeal to the "pave-it-over, anything-for-a-buck" developers and politicians.
lorraine steinheimer January 16, 2013 at 02:46 PM
i'd love a white castle,,too.
lorraine steinheimer January 16, 2013 at 02:47 PM
a chucky cheeze too.,great place for children ,other location quite far from Parsippany.
Analli Citall January 16, 2013 at 03:44 PM
Lorraine, it is all relative to where you live. The Chuck E Cheese in Hanover is about 2 miles from the Parsippany border. Parsippany is a large town and It is more than 2 miles from one side of Parsippany to the other side. So just because you could add a new Chuck E Cheese in Parsippany it may be farther away than the current location.
CONCETTA BARNISH January 20, 2013 at 07:40 PM
How about bringing a RED LOBSTER back to Parsippany or A Denny's would be nice too. But, if the residents want a WHOLE FOODS hopefully it will bring in money for our town.And maybe lower our taxes.Good luck to what ever the town brings in,. to many empty stores, we need to bring in business to our town.
Nicholas Robert Homyak January 20, 2013 at 07:52 PM
Suggest "whole foods" get wholesome discretion. Look up the State of NJ Smart Development Scoreboard for proposed development. There is no way this present proposal can pass muster exploiting the waterview woods. If Whole foods is sincere there are plenty of spaces already developed in the area already being used by the local population. Remember whole foods is just a name; apparently they appear linked to some sleazy cohorts. Whole foods in reality went with the Farms once prevalent in the Parsippanong; lands of many waters. There are plenty whole foods in Shop- rite this "whole food" is just a ply or ploy to develop more sacred land for no good cause or reason..get out of town!
NJ973resident January 21, 2013 at 06:12 AM
Whole Foods can even setup shop in the old Pathmark on Route 10 in Whippany!!
Stan L September 09, 2013 at 12:59 PM
I think that the Waterview location is perfect for a Whole Foods. With a Whole Foods at Rt. 46 & Intervale Rd, there will be little to no additional traffic to local roads, not to mention the area is just an empty and vacant lot. Why wouldn't we want to utilize our town's empty land? I also think that pre-existing retail space won't work since they are trying to add town homes too.

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