Whole Foods grocery store coming to Claremont

What was initially identified as a Claremont Whole Foods grocery store in a proposed commercial development on Base Line Road and Monte Vista Avenue is not quite what it seems.

According to TR Gregory of GPI Companies, the project will straddle the city and county line, with Upland and Claremont sharing jurisdiction and tax revenues. Details on the tax agreement between the cities and counties has not been released, he said.

“The cities have been working together to approve the specific plan for a joint agreement,” Mr. Gregory explained. “It’s part of an overall mixed-used project to include 400 new homes east of the center in Upland.

A site map provided by Upland’s Director of Development Jeff Zwack shows that the entire development does, in fact, straddle the city line but the Whole Foods building is squarely situated in the city of Upland.

“The fact is that the building is entirely in Upland. By law, all sales tax from sales at Whole Foods go entirely to Upland,” Mr. Zwack said in an email.

Although Whole Foods has billed the new market as in Claremont, Mr. Zwack refutes the distinction.

“It’s unfortunate that Whole Foods stated that the store is in Claremont because that is false,” Mr. Zwack related.

Claremont City Manager Tony Ramos confirms this assessment.

“I agree with the city of Upland. I have seen the development plans and the Whole Foods market is clearly situated within the boundaries of the city of Upland.”

The site map provided by Mr. Zwack shows only two retail pads with Claremont city boundaries—a 7000 square foot retail space along Base Line Road and a 9000 square foot space along the 210 freeway. Tenants for these buildings have not been identified.

Grading for the 80,000 square foot shopping center has already begun. The overall concept for the center is still being fine-tuned but Mr. Gregory said he anticipates at least two restaurants and a drug store in addition to Whole Foods serving as the anchor tenant.

The Whole Foods lease was signed under a new store concept, “365 by Whole Foods Market,” which aims to offer a “lower priced, no frills, smaller footprint format.”

Look for more on this development in a future edition of the COURIER.

—Kathryn Dunn

editor@claremont-courier.c

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