Thursday, June 21, 2018
Business

Boutique grocer eyes Pasco's Cypress Creek Town Center

Tennessee-based Hutton Development is proposing a boutique grocery store at the northeast corner of State Road 56 and Wesley Chapel Boulevard, in the northern portion of Cypress Creek Town Center.

The location, which has a Lutz address, puts it across the street from a proposed Aldi grocery store at the southwest corner of the same intersection.

"There is a retail grocery that we'd like to get. One of the new fad of grocers, I guess you would call it,'' landowner Robert Sierra said about the latest proposal.

The parcel is the highly visible corner of SR 56 and Wesley Chapel Boulevard (County Road 54) that previously had been identified as a potential site for a Whole Foods store as an anchor to a 24,000-square-foot shopping center that has been shelved. Representatives from Hutton and its engineering and architecture firms are scheduled to meet with Pasco County planners June 27 in what is known as a pre-application meeting. The preliminary plans call for 35,320 square feet of retail space with about two-thirds, 23,820 square feet, set aside for the grocery store and the remaining 11,500 square feet containing general retail stores.

Sierra declined to identify the potential tenant. Earth Fare, Sprouts Farmers Market and Lucky's Market all have indicated a desire to expand in the Tampa Bay area. Of those chains, several of Earth Fare's current or planned locations in Central Florida most closely resemble the size of the proposed Cypress Creek Town Center store.

The so-called boutique stores, significantly smaller than a major chain grocer, typically feature organic or natural foods and other products that are more expensive than grocers marketed for everyday low prices.

"We're asked every day here at the chamber about a boutique grocery store or a green grocery store. Our residents are very hungry for it,'' said Hope Allen, president and CEO of the Greater Wesley Chapel Chamber of Commerce.

Hutton also is developing a 3.3-acre parcel within Cypress Creek Town Center that will hold a seven-store retail center plus a restaurant and a 1,000-square-foot outdoor patio. That building is under construction on the north side of SR 56, just east of where two fast-food restaurants also are being built.

In addition, Hutton is the developer of the planned 325,000 square feet of retail space on land north and east of the Ford's Garage restaurant. At one time, that parcel had been earmarked for a Cabela's outdoor sporting goods megastore.

Hutton's proposed boutique grocery store is situated on a portion of the 22 acres at the western edge of Cypress Creek Town Center that earlier had been targeted for a 13-store plaza by Regency Centers. That company no longer is involved in the project.

In April, county planners met on the proposed 19,000-square-foot Aldi store, also on land owned by Sierra. Having multiple niche grocery stores in close proximity shouldn't be surprising, considering the area's relatively affluent demographics, tourists and customer traffic generated by the other retailers, including the nearby Tampa Premium Outlets mall in Cypress Creek Town Center.

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