Eight years after legal battles, design changes and community opposition, the city’s Board of Standards and Appeals gave Whole Foods the thumbs up for their 52,000-square foot supermarket on Third Avenue and Third Street.
The store will be five times bigger than current zoning regulations allow.
Craig Hammerman, the district manager of Community Board 6 sees the Board’s unanimous decision to give the organic mega-market – which will have a rooftop greenhouse and electric car chargers – a zoning variance, as a great thing for the neighborhood.
“We see this as a real positive investment in the community, we see this as an opportunity for local jobs and we see this as a way for the people in the neighborhoods surrounding here to have goods and services they otherwise wouldn’t have access to,” said Hammerman in an NY1 newscast this morning.
The future Whole Foods will sit next to a landmarked building on Third Street and Third Avenue next to the Gowanus Canal and its grand opening is expected next year.
“We’re really excited,” Whole Foods spokesman Michael Sinatra told the Daily News. “We should be able to get this construction started very soon.”
The megastore still has its detractors though. In January, manufacturers and artists to the project, saying that Whole Foods would kill small business and industry in the area.
On Monday, the Gowanus Institute unveiled with adjacent space for cooking classes, artist studios and “green initiatives.”