The Whole Foods in Englewood is closing, and State Senator Mattie Hunter (D-Chicago) is concerned about the impact it will have on the community.
The area was considered a food desert prior to the health food store’s opening in September 2016. The city provided over $10 million to finance its development.
“The city invested millions into this Whole Foods to provide access to healthier food options in an underserved community,” Hunter said. “Now, the city has lost its investment, and a source of nourishment for the region.”
The closure of Whole Foods will leave the community with only two stores south of Madison Street in Chicago. The announcement comes just two days after a new 66,000-square-foot Whole Foods store opened on the border between River North and Gold Coast, at 3 W. Chicago Ave.
Despite the opening of Go Green Community Fresh Market in Englewood earlier this year, and the Aldi on 63rd Street, the loss of Whole Foods will undeniably be felt throughout the neighborhood. The store employed dozens of residents and partnered with local suppliers to sell their products.
“Numerous people depended on this Whole Foods for their meals, and now they are left with limited options,” Hunter said. “My community deserves better.”
Whole Foods is closing six of its 530 locations nationwide, including a DePaul University shop. The closing dates have yet to be announced.
Amazon’s decision to close stores in Englewood and Lincoln Park as part of a nationwide closure of stores is obviously disappointing. My immediate worry is for the workers in both locations. Amazon must now take clear steps to protect those workers as they transition to new opportunities. Having been in both of those stores many times over the years, I saw first-hand how those workers gave their heart and soul to make the stores a success. Together with both communities and local elected leaders, my administration will work to repurpose these locations in a way that continues to serve the community and support the surrounding businesses. We as a city will continue to work hard to close food deserts that meet community needs with the community at the table.”