Cary, NC — Temperatures were in the low 40’s when a crowd gathered to celebrate Whole Foods Cary’s recent expansion and renovation at Waverly Place on Wednesday March 5, 2014.
Whole Foods Breaks Bread in Cary
In typical artsy fashion, the store synonymous with wholesome organic fair-trade goodness, eschewed the typical ribbon cutting in favor of a 6 foot long braided bread that employees enthusiastically tore apart after the requisite congratulatory speeches.
Town Councilman Jack Smith and Cary Chamber membership chair Delancy Carroll gave kudos to Whole Foods in Cary for their donation of more than $200,000 back to area non-profits in the 13 years they have called the Cary location home.
A Little History
This Whole Foods store originally planned their expansion as part of a general overhaul of Waverly Place which was proposed by former owners Todd Zapolski and Leslie Rudd of Durham.
In that old plan much of the center would have been bulldozed to make way for offices, a hotel and a mix of residential and retail uses. But then the recession hit, and the partners had a hard time making those plans a reality. They subsequently sold to RP Realty Partners, LLC of California in 2008.
RP Realty scaled back plans to focus on upscale retail and an event-filled Promenade area which was opened up in the heart of the center.
That renovation was complete in the summer of 2011.
Whole Foods Expansion
Whole Foods expansion began this past August. The store only added about 10% to the overall size, by taking over a former drycleaner’s space (about 3000 sq ft total). The new store uses their 33,000 square foot space more effectively, according to spokesperson, Elizabeth Taylor.
On a pre-opening tour, CaryCitizen was shown the expanded restaurant area which now seats 80 at tables, booths and a new counter area.
More Bread & Prepared Foods
The prepared foods are expanded along with a bigger baking area and brand new ovens. There’s a new Gelato bar and more coffee offerings too.
Beer on Tap. Growlers.
Brand new to the store: local beers on tap, sold in growlers.
And unique for our area, a Community Room which area groups can make use of for meetings and presentations. It seats about 12 comfortably around a conference table and even has the use of a large flat screen that hooks up to computers for presentations. Just make you reservation in advance to ensure its available !
Green, in more ways than one
The decor was chosen specifically for the Cary store with custom signage that reflects the community which plenty of greens and blues. The store employs 2 full-time artists to create the chalk boards and other in-store art. There is LED lighting throughout the store, creating a bright and inviting atmosphere. All cold cases have glass doors that keep the cold in and the store warm at huge energy savings.
With the Supermarket Wars under way here in Cary, I’d say Whole Foods just upped their game!
Story and photos by Lindsey Chester.
CaryCitizen is sponsored in part by Heart of Cary Association.