Trader Joe's Hearts The Upper East Side, Location Unknown..

Wouldn't it be great to have a Trader Joe's on the Upper East Side? Many locals sure think so, and many have asked me to look into that possibility. Rumors have been swirling in the neighborhood for the past year that a location is coming soon, yet there has been little substance to the rumor that I can find. Food Emporium's closure last year on Second Avenue between 86th and 87th only added fuel to the fire, as a viable space was now available. Digging deeper, Trader's is represented by RKF & Associates, the same broker that listed the Union Square space and coincidentally, the listing broker for the Food Emporium space. If the price was right, you would figure that it would make for a straight forward transaction. So, with this, why not track down the CEO and ask him myself? I did just that.

Trader Joe's is an unusual company- they don't talk, the don't pre-announce locations beyond a couple of months, and they do not seek publicity. If you Google "Dan Bane", the CEO, the only interview you will find is with USC magazine, affiliated with his alma mater. Through a bit of perseverance, and a talk with the Regional Acquisition Manager, I managed to get a response from Dan Bane by email. In short, he reiterated that they do not discuss locations, and found the Manhattan market "tough" to find deals. That said, he indicated that Trader Joe's would "love to open a bunch of stores in Manhattan", they continue to "work on deals", and they would "love to open a great store in your area (Upper East Side)."

I'm not sure if that is a morsel or a nugget, but I would say there is hope for more Trader Joe's in Manhattan in the future, and on the Upper East Side. As for the 86th Street location, an email to the listing broker has not been returned, not like I would expect him to reveal details of a deal that he may or may not be working on. So, I guess the rumors will continue to swirl, just now with perhaps a tad more validity.

Trader Joe's Location Request Page


  1. WHole Foods is opening 87th and 3rd mide Feb

  2. Last month an employee at the Trader Joes on the West Side told me they were going to open soon on East 86th Street

  3. The densest locale and wealthiest people are in Lenox Hill .. the lower portion of the UES. They should look between 66th street and 79th street .. not way up at 86th street.


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