At the groundbreaking ceremony Wednesday morning for the Whole Foods Market to be located at 3425 N. College Avenue in Fayetteville, Ark., city officials spoke of how excited they were to have the Austin-based organic grocery store.
Mayor Lioneld Jordan was in attendance, as well as Chamber of Commerce President Steve Clark, and Alderman Justin Tennant. All three spoke of their excitement and hopes for working with Whole Foods, which is planned to open in fall 2015.
“Whole Foods incorporates all the best of the values this city holds,” Clark said.
Once completed, officials said the store is looking to bring about 100-150 jobs to the area. Whole Foods is looking to partner with local non-profits when the store is operational as well, said Laura Zappi, Whole Food’s executive marketing director for the southeast region.
“We’re moving into the right place. We build green, and I can tell this community values that,” Zappi said. “Every store is uniquely built, and we’ll be bringing in local flavors.”
The Fayetteville location will be one of 100 new stores Whole Foods plans to build throughout the next three years, according to a press release.
The 6.6-acre area next to Lewis Ford where the store will be built used to be a Mercedes-Benz dealership, and has been used for several businesses throughout the past 10 years. The store will take up the Northwest corner of the lot as a part of the developing College Marketplace center. The shopping center’s plans include three smaller retail spaces on the lot.
“We’re happy to be here in Fayetteville,” said Steve Collins of S.J. Collins Enterprises, the development contractor for the project. “It’s not just a place to shop. I can assure you all how well Whole Foods will get involved in this community.”