|GA's shopping cart|
...a Trader Joe's in Hoboken. High quality food at low prices... yeah!
This morning was my very first trip to our city's new Trader Joe's.
Look at all of that great stuff in my cart! TJ's tempura chicken (white meat chicken, sweet and sour sauce), beef meatballs (GA secret: boil for 20-30 minutes first to reduce fat and salt), frozen cod, peas, fresh brussel sprouts, canned green chillies and black beans, pesto-filled tortellini... yum.
So you ask: how does this store compare with TJ's in Edgewater?
The inventory is at least the same, but the interior layout is more spacious; aisle widths feel at least double.
Not kidding people, this store feels wide and open. Though crowded today, shopping cart navigation was easy; no ass-bumping with strangers, no waiting to get through an aisle. Also, the (21) cashiers are in a separate, dedicated area that doesn't overlap with customer circulation (like Edgewater's does).
And for those who want to drive there, TJ's will validate up to (1) hour of parking in the building garage.
My review: 4 thumbs up! Trader Joe's is a great addition to our great little city.
But... please note that TJ's cannot replace our local supermarkets, ShopRite and ACME, which have the full range of foods and household products- but it sure complements them.
Of interest to note, Mike DeFusco took a victory lap for "voting on the building" that houses TJ's! I kid you not:
Yes, that's true.
GA, a ZBA Commissioner who served with Mike, voted on this application too.
For the record, when Mike and I heard the 1350 Willow application, it had already received preliminary site plan approvals for height and density variances- in either 2007, 2008 or 2009. Like other applications that came back to us after receiving preliminary plan approvals, the 'fix was in' on height and density. Once a variance is granted, it cannot be rescinded.
So, I cannot say personally, I am "proud" of a building of this height and density in an R-2 district.
I don't want to second-guess why the original board granted these variances. But they did.
I do recall my board got the Applicant's agreement for modest improvements. There were no tenants noted in the application, just ground floor space designated for commercial use. The hearing transcript is no longer online- I'l try to find it.
Anyway, GA is thankful that 1350 Willow's tenant is Trader Joe's.
But GA and other members of the Zoning Board who approved the application had no part of luring this tenant. Thus, taking credit for the building- being "proud" to have voted for a building that required multiple variances to be built before it lucked into a great tenant is-- in my opinion, a stretch.
It's also telling. Telling about the attitude of a politician who is "proud" of voting for a building in an R-2 residential zone that required the granting of so many variances to exist.