By Charles Cooper
The Glendale City Council Tuesday directed city staff to
continue negotiations with the Trader Joe’s Company
to construct a small supermarket at the west end of
the Montrose Shopping Park on Honolulu Avenue.
Montrose merchants have been asking for a commercial
anchor at that end of the business district for several
years,and Trader Joe’s and similar retail has been suggested
as a candidate.
Doug Yokomizo, vice president of development for the grocery
chain, indicated Trader Joe’s is ready to move forward on the deal,
and he praised city officials for their efforts over the past year
and a half.
Dale Dawson, shopping park president, said the store will help
activate the 2400 block of Honolulu Avenue and encourage other
businesses to move in.
Andrea Humberger, speaking for the Montrose/Sparr Heights Residents
Association, expressed modified support for the project, while raising
concerns about design compatibility, noise and traffic.
The city issued a letter of intent to enter into talks, after
discussing the proposal with store management at a trade association
convention for shopping districts.
The lease terms being offered will bring $220,000 a year to the
shopping park. The property at 2448-2468 Honolulu was the former
site of Paradise Ford, and was purchased in 2002 with funds from
the Montrose Parking District.
Glendale City Councilman John Drayman said the project “has widespread
support in Montrose.” It was identified as the primary goal in a city
survey of improvements needed.
If the agreement is completed, Trader Joe’s will have four months to
get building permits and other licenses. The city will remove hazardous
material and present a clean site as is. Estimated construction period
is 270 days.
The lease term is 10 years, with options for six five-ear extensions.
Rent will be increased every five years by the consumer price index,
not to exceed 10 percent over each five year period.
Drayman said there will be no underground parking on the site, a feature originally discussed.
The store is one of three major changes planned for Montrose, with the other two waiting for funding. The Montrose Library, located across Honolulu, will be moved to the Rockhaven property, and the fire station, adjoining the library, will be expanded to take up the full site.
Trader Joe’s began in 1958 as Pronto Markets, and was incorporated under the current name in 1967, with offices in South Pasadena. The founder, Joe Coulombe, sold the company to the German firm Allbrecht, and retired in 1988. Corporate offices are now in Monrovia, and the company has more than 300 stores in 28 states, with an annual gross of $7.2 billion.
The Montrose store would be the third in Glendale, with other located on Foothill and Glendale Avenue.
The former Paradise Ford dealership, located at the far west end of the Montrose Shopping Park on Honolulu Avenue, is the possible location for a new Trader Joe's market. Photo by Mary O'Keefe