STAMFORD, Conn. — Trader Joe’s fans have gotten their wish: The food store will be moving into the spot formerly occupied by Borders Books in Stamford's High Ridge Shopping Center.
“Never heard anything at the level of interest with a particular location like this one,” said Norman Lotstein, the Pyramid Real Estate broker who handled the property at 1041 High Ridge Road.
The Stamford Daily Voice asked readers on its Facebook Page to say what they would like to see fill the empty building, and more than 15 expressed an interest in Trader Joe’s, the most popular of answer.
Finding an "anchor" tenant with the ability to draw people to the shopping center was important for Lotstein. “They would do that, be a high traffic generator,” he said of Trader Joe’s.
Lotstein first approached the national grocery chain about the space several months ago, and it was not interested, he said. However, several guarantees, including a pledge that no other convenience store or food market could move into the shopping center, sealed the deal.
“They will find it to be one their most successful locations. I am absolutely positive of it,” he said.
The store is expected to open in early 2013 after the inside of the building is taken apart and rebuilt to suit Trader Joe’s needs, Lotstein said. Demolition is expected to begin in the next week or two.
The lease, which was signed a couple of days ago, guarantees the store will be there for the next 10 years, with four 5-year options, Lotstein said. “They have the right to be there for a good and long time.”