Trader Joe’s is planning an Upper West Side outpost on Broadway at 72nd. Here’s NY Magazine’s report:
With locations on 14th Street, Cobble Hill, and Rego Park, [Trader Joe’s] will now open a two-level store in a tower under construction at Broadway and 72nd Street next year, according to a proposal submitted to the local community board. It’s a foodie neighborhood, with Fairway and Citarella two blocks north and Zabar’s on West 80th Street. “Nobody wants to have a bunch of competition, and obviously the same people would shop there as shop with us,” says Steve Jenkins, Fairway’s manager. “But we’ve taken competition before, and we’ve kicked their butts.” Trader Joe’s declined to comment.
With outposts in Queens and on 14th St, Trader Joe’s is clearly seeking beachheads in the various boroughs. It’s great that the popular store will be servicing the Upper West Side. Still, despite Jenkins’ intention to fight until the last piece of Fairway cheese has curdled and died, I worry about the fate of this iconic Upper West Side grocer.
Clearly, Fairway is already feeling the hot breath of competition from the new guys in the ‘hood. Over the last few months, the grocer has mailed out coupons to Upper West Side households. That’s a sure sign the market is feeling the heat, which is only going to intensify with the planned TJ’s opening only two blocks away and with the opening of the new Whole Foods at 98th and Columbus some time in 2009.
After years of Soviet-style deprivation, it’s great to have a plethora of food stores to choose from. However, I hope the new guys don’t knock Fairway off the block.