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Predictions for the coming year


GRDadof3

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3 hours ago, jonrapley said:

I'll have a go at this.

5. GRFC unveil plans for a new 10,000 stadium somewhere on the outskirts of the downtown core. My guess is north of the city by the river or somewhere on the westside. 

9. Talk of Whole Foods opening up in the area intensifies.

Agree with everything except these two statements. I have a hunch that GRFC and 5/3rd ballpark end in marriage to some capacity including significant investment in expansion of the facilities. Second, while I wish for a Whole Foods dearly, I feel like Amazon will block expansion of retail facilities and we'll instead see something like Amazon now offering us access to same-day/next-day deliver of WF and it's serviced out of Lansing or Chicago. 

3 hours ago, jdkacz said:

I don't want to rain on the negative prediction parade, but I think Founders agreeing to having Avery Brewery do contract brewing for them will alleviate the short term need to do so.

I'm not saying it's good or bad, but can't help to feel we're in a post-craft beer phase. Tourism related to craft beer will be on the decline. 

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2 hours ago, kwl said:

Agree with everything except these two statements. I have a hunch that GRFC and 5/3rd ballpark end in marriage to some capacity including significant investment in expansion of the facilities. Second, while I wish for a Whole Foods dearly, I feel like Amazon will block expansion of retail facilities and we'll instead see something like Amazon now offering us access to same-day/next-day deliver of WF and it's serviced out of Lansing or Chicago. 

I'm not saying it's good or bad, but can't help to feel we're in a post-craft beer phase. Tourism related to craft beer will be on the decline. 

Kwl, I agree, I think the craft beer boom as we've known it the past several years, is past us. 

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1 hour ago, kwl said:

Agree with everything except these two statements. I have a hunch that GRFC and 5/3rd ballpark end in marriage to some capacity including significant investment in expansion of the facilities. Second, while I wish for a Whole Foods dearly, I feel like Amazon will block expansion of retail facilities and we'll instead see something like Amazon now offering us access to same-day/next-day deliver of WF and it's serviced out of Lansing or Chicago. 

I'm not saying it's good or bad, but can't help to feel we're in a post-craft beer phase. Tourism related to craft beer will be on the decline. 

I think the whole Whole Foods craze has died down tremendously. On their website they only show one store in development:

https://www.wholefoodsmarket.com/stores/list/development

Obviously there may be more that are under secrecy but I've never seen that page have only one listing. 

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10 minutes ago, GRDadof3 said:

I think the whole Whole Foods craze has died down tremendously. On their website they only show one store in development:

https://www.wholefoodsmarket.com/stores/list/development

Obviously there may be more that are under secrecy but I've never seen that page have only one listing. 

They have more stores in development that are not listed.  There is another one in development in Austin that is not listed.  Unless Amazon really is shutting down expansion, I would think one of their 365 stores would be successful in Grand Rapids. 

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10 minutes ago, The ATX said:

They have more stores in development that are not listed.  There is another one in development in Austin that is not listed.  Unless Amazon really is shutting down expansion, I would think one of their 365 stores would be successful in Grand Rapids. 

I know but I'm saying I look at that list once or twice every year and usually there are at least half a dozen listed. Right now there's only one. 

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13 hours ago, kwl said:

Agree with everything except these two statements. I have a hunch that GRFC and 5/3rd ballpark end in marriage to some capacity including significant investment in expansion of the facilities. Second, while I wish for a Whole Foods dearly, I feel like Amazon will block expansion of retail facilities and we'll instead see something like Amazon now offering us access to same-day/next-day deliver of WF and it's serviced out of Lansing or Chicago. 

The Whole Foods one was a shot in the dark. My thinking was that we are seeing a lot of new stores enter our market by woodland, that it's only a matter of time before others take notice. 

Regarding GRFC I know their relationship with 5/3rd isn't the best after the Detroit game there 2 seasons ago. The attendance was a lot less than anticipated and the field was not safe to play on. I know they are trying hard to find their own stadium though, so I would like to think it can happen. 

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1 hour ago, jonrapley said:

Regarding GRFC I know their relationship with 5/3rd isn't the best after the Detroit game there 2 seasons ago. The attendance was a lot less than anticipated and the field was not safe to play on. I know they are trying hard to find their own stadium though, so I would like to think it can happen. 

I really hope GRFC doesn't go the Whitecaps route. It was a horrible experience to watch. I hope they find/build a true soccer stadium. Trying to squeeze a soccer field onto 5/3 Ball Park is not ideal.

Joe

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1 hour ago, joeDowntown said:

I really hope GRFC doesn't go the Whitecaps route. It was a horrible experience to watch. I hope they find/build a true soccer stadium. Trying to squeeze a soccer field onto 5/3 Ball Park is not ideal.

Joe

I think if GRFC held all of its games at 5/3 Ballpark, we would see its demise as a program. The type of people showing up to watch GRFC games are not the type that want to get into a car, drive up to Comstock Park, and watch soccer in a baseball stadium with horrible sight lines. In order for GRFC to continue to flourish, it needs to remain in the immediate vicinity of downtown.

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Here is my list:

#1. Like kwl said, I think the craft beer boom is over.  I think if you have solid financials and a good business plan, you'll stay in business and thrive, but I am worried about those that have maybe over extended themselves. (I thought that to be New Holland, but they are still expanding).  Nationally, it appears that spirits and marijuana are creating headwinds against beer in general.  With that being said, I think GR's distillers are probably in good position for continual growth for 2019.

#2.  I don't think GRFC gets a stadium deal, unless there is a wealthy benefactor.  Granted, its wiki, but it looks like attendance is down about 50%? I enjoy soccer more than baseball, but for whatever reason I find myself going to 2-3 Whitecaps games a year versus only 1 GRFC game.  I think its just more of a family friendly event. I get zero interest to taking the family to a GRFC game. I hope I am wrong on this and they continue to grow, but for 2019, I see no progression for GRFC getting a bigger/soccer specific stadium.

#3.  Investment into Rivertown will finally happen. They'll work to get some new to GR restaurants/stores to burnish its image. Cheesecake Factory or Crate & Barrel, I don't know the retail scene that well, but I think if there's any urgency there to keep that place moving forward and not collapsing like the development on north beltline, they get creative and add some new stuff to the area.

#4. I do not see the need for a Whole Foods in GR with D&W, Fresh Thyme, Meijer, Trader Joe's, etc. however, with their investment in the area, I do think we'll see a Whole Foods announced in 2019 and built in 2020.  With that, I also think we'll see a second Trader Joe's in the area (Rivertown/Metro Hospital or maybe the area by the Score on the way to Rockford)

#5. Announced plans for redevelopment in Gas Light Village.  

#6. Gerald R Ford airport will get several more direct flights added.  My guesses would be Salt Lake City or LA is next (I'd love to see something more north in CA like San Francisco or Seattle, but my money is on the first two)

#7.  I think someone mentioned this earlier, but I also agree and I predict we'll see more chains moving DT (and I think this is a good thing). We'll see a CVS/Walgreens, standalone Starbucks location, and another restaurant chain enter the downtown scene. 

#8. The hotel at the convention center gets announced in 2019/construction starts in 2020.

#9. The MSU medical complex II starts and is bigger then initially announced and tops 400,000 sq ft.

#10.  Little or no movement on the Market sight.

#11. We do see a 20+ story building announced (separate the convention hotel) 

 

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26 minutes ago, jdkacz said:

Here is my list:

#1. Like kwl said, I think the craft beer boom is over.  I think if you have solid financials and a good business plan, you'll stay in business and thrive, but I am worried about those that have maybe over extended themselves. (I thought that to be New Holland, but they are still expanding).  Nationally, it appears that spirits and marijuana are creating headwinds against beer in general.  With that being said, I think GR's distillers are probably in good position for continual growth for 2019.

#2.  I don't think GRFC gets a stadium deal, unless there is a wealthy benefactor.  Granted, its wiki, but it looks like attendance is down about 50%? I enjoy soccer more than baseball, but for whatever reason I find myself going to 2-3 Whitecaps games a year versus only 1 GRFC game.  I think its just more of a family friendly event. I get zero interest to taking the family to a GRFC game. I hope I am wrong on this and they continue to grow, but for 2019, I see no progression for GRFC getting a bigger/soccer specific stadium.

#3.  Investment into Rivertown will finally happen. They'll work to get some new to GR restaurants/stores to burnish its image. Cheesecake Factory or Crate & Barrel, I don't know the retail scene that well, but I think if there's any urgency there to keep that place moving forward and not collapsing like the development on north beltline, they get creative and add some new stuff to the area.

#4. I do not see the need for a Whole Foods in GR with D&W, Fresh Thyme, Meijer, Trader Joe's, etc. however, with their investment in the area, I do think we'll see a Whole Foods announced in 2019 and built in 2020.  With that, I also think we'll see a second Trader Joe's in the area (Rivertown/Metro Hospital or maybe the area by the Score on the way to Rockford)

#5. Announced plans for redevelopment in Gas Light Village.  

#6. Gerald R Ford airport will get several more direct flights added.  My guesses would be Salt Lake City or LA is next (I'd love to see something more north in CA like San Francisco or Seattle, but my money is on the first two)

#7.  I think someone mentioned this earlier, but I also agree and I predict we'll see more chains moving DT (and I think this is a good thing). We'll see a CVS/Walgreens, standalone Starbucks location, and another restaurant chain enter the downtown scene. 

#8. The hotel at the convention center gets announced in 2019/construction starts in 2020.

#9. The MSU medical complex II starts and is bigger then initially announced and tops 400,000 sq ft.

#10.  Little or no movement on the Market sight.

#11. We do see a 20+ story building announced (separate the convention hotel) 

 

Speaking to the attendance of GRFC...I'm not sure what the average attendance was in 2018, but 2017 was an odd year if I remember correctly. Seems like they had a .500 record, weren't playoff qualifiers, and had an odd falling out between the program and two players that were brothers (or something like that). There seemed to be a lot of drama revolving around 2017's season and I'm not sure if that trickled into the fan following or not. 

I enjoy my time at the games against programs like Detroit City, but I always had a feeling like I was watching a club team and not a professional one. It takes place in a high school football stadium (as nice of a stadium as it is), there are no drinks (unless they did away with that. I didn't go in 2018), they play cheesy music from the late 90s-early 00s (I couldn't fit on two hands how many times I have counted the playing of "I've got a feeling tonight's going to be a good night"), the opposing teams (minus Detroit City) bring like 10 fans...Overall, I think GRFC would really benefit from upping their professional/league status, getting their own stadium specific to soccer, and staying downtown. Also, scrap the game day 2000s pop CD.  I really want the program to succeed and be on the same level of fan interest as the Whitecaps and Griffins.

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On 1/12/2018 at 2:44 PM, WMrapids said:

Ok, my first try:

• Hinman Tower will be scaled down

Yup

• We will not see a new proposal over 12 stories (keeping it safe at 12)

Yup

• GVSU will announce further plans to become even more involved near the Medical Mile.

Nope

• Nothing will happen with the post office, though they might get opioid detecting equipment

Yup

• Rapids restoration plans will progress significantly

Kinda. We saw more detailed plans.

• We will see more of Amplify GR’s presence in southeast Grand Rapids

Nope

2019

• Nothing proposed over 12 stories

• No progress on convention center or hotel

• No post office proposals

• No GRFC stadium

• No downtown CVS/Walgreens

• Few details about the Market project

• Further expansion near the airport

• Calder Plaza project will progress

• Rendering for the MSU projects will be released. Construction will begin mid-2020?

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Here's mine from last December:

What we'll see..

) 601 Bond topped out, feeling way taller in that neighborhood than anyone imagined - Yep

) Monroe North Embassy Suites closed in, won't be complete until 2019 though - Yep

) Warner Tower topped out, lower floors closed in, Hyatt Place either almost topped out or close - Well beyond that

) A complete mess/flurry of construction work at Studio Park, some parts vertical by end of 2018 - Definitely

) A flurry of apartment projects wrapping up, vacancies will rise for a bit but will begin to be filled up again by early 2019 - Haven't heard on vacancies.

) Opening of GVSU health sciences in Belknap - Yep

) Grand Opening of Meijer/Bridge Street Market on West Side. Bridge St becomes almost impassable for much of the day - First part true, second part not for much of the day but it is busier. 

) 50 Monroe becoming one of the coolest projects downtown in some time. AC Hotel opening late 2019. - Hmmmm

What we may see..

) Unveiling of GVSU/Spectrum project on Michigan Street, including a massive 2000 car parking ramp - Yep

) Lyon Square revamp kicked off - Nope

) Calder Plaza remake kicked off - Nope

) Another revamp of ArtPrize due to flagging attendance - Wow, I feel clairvoyant

) More projects on Wealthy Street, including the church and parking lot at Wealthy and Eastern - Yes and no

) The project at Cherry and Eastern finally kicking off - Nope

) Greg Gilmore actually getting his Mangiamo townhouse project approved, with some tweaks - Nope

)  A big project with UofM Metro Health, maybe even another medical school - Nope

) Hinman finally announcing a ground-breaking, but with both hotels and apartments in ample supply, not until 2019. - Yep

Wild speculation/spitballing

) A massive mixed use/lifestyle-ish development announced in suburban Grand Rapids, either in Standale, or Kentwood, or along the Beltline - Nope, although I guess Westown is trying to do that

) Whole Foods finally announces a West Michigan location, in the parking lot at the new Woodland Mall expansion - Nope

) A major employer announces an expansion into this market at either the 36th Street site or in Cascade Township - Amazon? 

) Meijer announces a new massive Jamestown Township development on the property they own out there - Sorta

) Kent County Parks announces a major land purchase for a new park - Nope. But Ottawa County is ramping up the Grand River trail. 

) GRFC finds a spot for a new stadium. No one likes the location. :P  - Nope

) MSU announces a formal RFP for its property around the new research center. They also announce a major partnership with a federal agency that will include a large new research center. - First part, yep. Second part? Remains to be seen I guess. 

I'll think of some more...

_______________________________________________________________________________________________________

In 2019:

) More development announced for the West Side in the area to the South of Bridge Street, in all of those buildings owned by Swift Printing.   A "live music" village will be part of it to compete against Studio Park.

) MSU Innovation  unveiled  to much applause. Construction underway by this time next year

) Hinman topped out

) Nothing happens with the convention center hotel idea, but the convention center looks at expanding in the same area

) GRFC ramps up speculation about a new stadium

) Will we see a Whole Foods? Do we need one? 

) Studio Park picks up some notable retailers, although much of it will be like Celebration Village. Cheesecake Factory will be one.

) Bells Brewery takes another stab at opening in this area

) Nothing happens with 201 Market

) Nothing happens with the post office

) Project 1 is really cool, but only half of it is really cool. GRAM announces a major show during the time period. 

) River work finally begins in the Fall and it's just a big mess out in the river, through 2020. :)

) City of GR population tops 200,000. Grand Rapids holds a big celebration to mark the occasion.

) Another mixed-use building goes in the place of the canceled Franklin Partners office building at Studio Park

) After Studio Park's ramp opens and quickly gets gobbled up, and Warner Building ramp gets gobbled up, the new city manager pushes through the wedge lot ramp idea with no office space (built to potentially accommodate future expansion above). The new manager restores business confidence and a major local employer looks at moving downtown. 

) Consumers Energy starts construction on the West Side amid a new campus (Circuit West)

) I will keep thinking.... :)

 

 

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8 hours ago, RegalTDP said:

Will probably only be attended by MJLO, Pattmost, and myself :D

:rofl: :rofl:I'll bring the champaign!  Although I'm not sure I'll even believe it when I see it anymore. The census bureau has been teasing us with that number since 1970.

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I'm going big in 2019 after slacking (and missing the mark) in 2018. :)

My 2018 predictions: 

1. A techshop will be announced near downtown.  NOPE

2. The Hinman building will be cannibalized by lack of apartment demand and other hotel developments. YES AND NO

3. The Convention center hotel will get renewed focus (and help kill the Hinman project).  YES, BUT MOSTLY NO

4. Plans will be announced for a building “off Bridge Street” that will test the height limits of the west side. NO, BUT I'M BUMPING TO 2019.

5. The old GM plant project will announce tenants, though most/all will be local expansions, not new players in the market. NOPE

6. The business community will become very vocal about parking concerns downtown, influencing the new DGRI / city manager candidates. YES? TBD

7. GR Whitewater will announce a major private donor to help restore the rapids. NOPE

My 2019 Predictions:

1. 8-10 story mixed-use building will be proposed west of 131, a half block north or south of Bridge Street.

2. GVSU will acquire a massive amount of property south of the current campus, including the Padnos property and Tanglefoot building from Emperor on the north, Wealthy on the South, Front to Straight street. Map

3. As part of this acquisition, GVSU and GRFC will announce a joint agreement to build a soccer stadium and event venue on the Southeast part of the property. A local construction/development party will also be involved in the partnership.

4. The Keeler Building will finally get a new owner. The main tenant will be Kendall College, which will take the North half of the building for student housing / student activity center. The South half will be used for commercial / office space. 

5. The city will move forward with a parking ramp on the Library surface lot. It'll be less ambitious than the conceptual designs, but will still include a liner building on the southern half.

6. People will start openly talking about VAI Phase 3 on the property South of Crescent St. but no designs will be shown in 2019. Rafael Viñoly will continue work on this project. Map

7. A new proposal for the old "Tallhouse" property at 45 Ionia will be announced. It'll be the tallest building proposed in 2019 (but will still be in the 11-15 story range). Map

8. The little building at 22 Ionia will finally be sold to developers, marking the last vacant building on Ionia to be developed. Street View

9. A "liner" building will be proposed for the small lot in front of the Boardwalk. Similar in size to the "Homes at Rivers Edge" to the north (but 5-6 stories), it'll be be part of the development boom related to the river restoration. Street View

10. Time Equities (REIT building 601 Bond) will purchase 648 Bond to go along with the small piece of property they own on Bond/Trowbridge. No new development will be announced. Map

11. Plans for the old Sligh Furniture complex (Antique row) on Century will be announced. In corresponding news, the antique stores will spend the rest of the year moving to 1111 Godfrey. 2019 will be spent vacating existing tenants and formalizing plans (which will give the market time to absorb new apartments around town). The development will remind us a bit of American Seating Park, and will have a "bit of everything".

12. One of the tenants announced for Studio C will be Lucky Strike or Punch Bowl Social, with the off chance a local entity will build an independent, but similar venue.

13. Lake Michigan Drive between Covell and Wilson will become the most aggressively developed / redeveloped section of town as the Laker Line becomes reality. In the next several years, this will become the place to live for college students / young professionals and young families that want to start raising a family, but don't want the feel of the suburbs. It'll also attract bars, restaurants and retail as GVSU finally gets a "proper" big college town, just a short bus-ride away. While the Silver Line was a real stinker (from a ridership/reinvestment standpoint), the Laker Line will break records and become a model for BRT developments around the US. It'll also give the Silver Line a shot in the arm as people embrace BRT and it's easier to switch lines. 

I've never been a big proponent of the "ride the bus, ride a bike" movement, but I think in this instance, it's a perfect fit and will help change the preception of public transit. 

Miscellaneous:

a. The convention center hotel discussion will keep moving along, but the CAA will take its time as they watch new hotels come online. I personally think this will happen (and be run by a local hotel operator), but I see more action in 2020.

b. The MSU Research Building proposal will be shown publicly and there will be a lot of bickering on UP about whether we love it or hate it. 

c. The new city manager is going to bust some chops and we'll be seeing a lot more discussion about the development of public parking.

d. The post office still won't move. But the writing will be on the wall that it's an outdated facility for today's day and age, and 2020 will be a pivotal year.

e. The death of craft beer will be highly overrated. Some consolidation will take place, and quality will win out, but ultimately, that will be what makes Grand Rapids stand out (good beer).

I love this time of year. You can sit and dream, throw stuff out there and then apologize next year for being so far off. With that being said, I feel pretty confident in some of my predictions. :)

Joe

 

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Doesn't look like I did predictions last year. Does that mean I get 100%?

My predictions for 2019:

  • Lyon Square - Nothing Happens
  • Calder Plaza - Plans are made toward the end of the year but confidence in anything actually happening is low.
  • RDV moves into new building but cosmetic upgrades are really minor.
  • Hinman Tower tops out. It looks just as good as the rendering.
  • Fears of a recession toward the end of the year result in the Market project being scaled back or cancelled.
  • Moderate-to-large residential developments continue in the suburbs and get little to no attention here until forum-goers stumble upon them by chance.
  • Convention Center Hotel moves forward, but veeeeery slooooooowly.
  • Library parking ramp gets decided, but no ground moving yet.
  • Another attempt is made at the Keeler.
  • A moderately-sized development is proposed along Division.
  • A moderately-sized development is proposed in the Market District, probably as a conversion of one of the old factory buildings on Godfrey or Century into apartments.
  • 196/96/Beltline and bridge over Grand River construction results in massive traffic backups and congestion, and demand for better infrastructure gets much louder, especially with commuters from Ada, Cascade, and Rockford being affected. Talks about mass transit options for these corridors arises with commuter trains that probably won't ever happen, or an east-side BRT-lite like Silver Line in cooperation with Spectrum.
  • Post Office still sits.
  • Chunks of land between Wealthy and Franklin are demolished for parking lots.
  • Chunks of land on the West Side are demolished for parking lots.
  • Chunks of land on the north side of 96 are demolished for parking lots.
  • Another development is proposed in the Michigan St. corridor, or north of 96 not necessarily in Belknap.
  • Panda Express attempts another location near Woodland.
  • Chik-Fil-A attempts another location on Alpine.
  • White Castle still is not here.
  • Whole Foods still is not here.
  • Groundbreaking for MSU Research Facility. It looks cool, but not super cool.
  • Frustrated by parking and 96 congestion from construction, another Downtown office moves to the burbs, possibly near Ada.
  • Rockford acquires more land and announces another development for its westside, but no renderings or additional information are available.
  • Whitmer tries to fix the damn roads, but gridlock in the legislature gets in the way.
  • Spectrum announces a new building.
  • A small development is proposed in Burton Heights with LIHTC.
  • Still no IKEA, and thus I will continue to have strong desires for swedish meatballs.
Edited by tSlater
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11 hours ago, ZAP! said:

No, that's not good enough. You need to pitch in your prediction that we will or won't. :P

It's such a head-scratcher that I can't even speculate. I though the best chance for one was a few years ago. After 10 years of predicting that we'd hear about something, I'm .... ambivalent. :)

 

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1 hour ago, GRDadof3 said:

It's such a head-scratcher that I can't even speculate. I though the best chance for one was a few years ago. After 10 years of predicting that we'd hear about something, I'm .... ambivalent. :)

 

I personally think Forest Hills Foods is one of the main reasons we haven't seen a Whole Foods. That would be the location in Metro GR to put one. Most other places I feel like people wouldn't pay the premium over Meijer. I could see a Whole Foods Market 365 coming into the market at some point.

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3 hours ago, Pattmost20 said:

I personally think Forest Hills Foods is one of the main reasons we haven't seen a Whole Foods. That would be the location in Metro GR to put one. Most other places I feel like people wouldn't pay the premium over Meijer. I could see a Whole Foods Market 365 coming into the market at some point.

They could certainly replace it. It's a terrible store now. 

 

3 hours ago, Prankster said:

Yikes, tSlater, sounds like the only thing you left out were the four horsemen of the apocalypse. :tw_wink:

Speaking of the four horsemen, just got this in my email: these were the top read stories in the Business Journal for 2018. No wonder the business community here is so overly conservative. :)

 

GRBJ most read.JPG

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